The Tampa Bay Buccaneers knew it was important to land former Boise State running back Doug Martin when he was still on the board at No. 31 during the 2012 NFL Draft. Now, the rookie can officially say he’s a member of the Buccaneers.
Tampa Bay signed Martin to a five-year deal on Monday–making him the 12th rookie to reach an agreement with the team since the draft ended in April. After finishing with the 30th ranked rushing offense in 2011 (91.1 rushing yards per game), the Buccaneers hope Martin can make an immediate impact in 2012 and could even work his way into the starting role.
With these type of numbers, there’s no question Tampa Bay needed to address the running back position during April’s draft and Martin could end up being one of the biggest steals of the first round. During his final three seasons at Boise State, Martin recorded 3,324 rushing yards to go along with 43 touchdowns–which is pretty impressive for a running back that stands at 5’9″ and weighs around 219 lbs. LeGarrette Blount has yet to prove he has what it takes to be an every-down back for the Buccaneers–so the addition of Martin should make an interesting battle to keep an eye on during training camp.
Either way, there’s no reason why Greg Schiano can’t figure out an effective way to use both Martin and Blount in the backfield; it’s just a matter of how well the two running backs would handle sharing carries with one another as opposed to battling for the starting job.
Dan Parzych is the Director of Content for RantSports.com
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