If there’s anything to take away from last year’s rookie class–it would be Doug Martin of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers has the potential to develop into one of the league’s next top running backs.
The Buccaneers knew the potential was there for Martin when they selected him in the 2012 NFL Draft, but nobody could have predicted for him to have the type of impact he had during his rookie season. In fact, there was a time in the middle of the season when Martin seemed impossible to contain as there was even one game in Week 9 where he finished with 251 rushing yards and four touchdowns.
On the season, Martin recorded 1,926 yards from the line of scrimmage to go along with 12 total touchdowns and if he can manage to avoid the sophomore slump–there’s no reason why the running back shouldn’t be able to keep Tampa Bay in the playoff hunt. It’s one thing when a running back is dangerous on the ground, but the fact that Martin is capable of being just as dangerous in the passing game as well shows just how special of a weapon the Buccaneers have.
This team has made plenty of changes this offseason to improve from 2012 and as long as Martin can manage to live up to the hype in his second season–don’t be surprised if Tampa Bay emerges as a sleeper contender to keep an eye on in the NFC next year.
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