Bucs RB Doug Martin - Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
While it wasn’t any earth-shattering news, Tampa Bay general manager Jason Licht told the media on Wednesday at the Combine in Indianapolis what PewterReport.com had previously reported, and that is the Bucs and Doug Martin’s agent will meet at some point while both are in town.
Bucs RB Doug Martin – Photo by: Mark Lomoglio/PR
“We’ll be meeting with Doug’s people here (at the Combine),” Licht said. “We’ve got a couple things going for us here on that. I know he wants to be a Buc and I know we want him to be a Buc. I’m sure there will be some obstacles, there always are in negotiations, but we’ll prepare for either way. I’m optimistic and we’ll continue talking with him.”
Martin is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent next month, and while no one can say for sure there are teams ready to back up a Brinks truck for the former Boise State star, many Bucs fans are nervous when thinking about the possibility of Martin hitting the open market when free agency opens on March 9 at 4 p.m.
Martin had a terrific bounce back season in 2015, rushing for 1,402 yards (second behind Adrian Peterson) and leading the NFL in some categories including runs over 20 yards and also forcing missed tackles.
As noted by Licht earlier on Wednesday, both sides want to get a deal done, and while the Bucs do have Charles Sims who they have touted as a capable replacement if need be, by not re-signing Martin, that creates another need that would have to be addressed via free agency or draft.
Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at [email protected]
No question we all want him here; it’s all about what is a fair price for a RB who isn’t automatically there on a 3rd and 5 down and has been on IR 2 of his 4 years. My guess is around 5 million a year, but I’m getting some fan push back on this thought so lets just sign him for whatever he wants; right?
they had a chance to sign him cheap last year. Now they have to pay the market price. He may have been injured before but he is not now. It didn’t stop us in signing McCoy. How long was he out ?
I wasn’t happy McCoy was paid so much money because I knew it would raise the bar so high. Kind of like the very few higher paid NFL players versus the overwhelming lower paid NFL players. By over paying; it causes well deserved players not having the opportunity to be paid appropriately.
Horse- Whether he gets 5 mil a yr or 8 mil a yr it won’t effect your checking account what so ever, the Bucs have 50 mil of cap space we have a top player at his position so pay him accordingly. V-Jax is 33 yrs old and will count for 13 against the cap, who also didn’t do much last yr cause of an injury, do we want to save money and let him walk as well? Lets keep the few players we have that we can build around and drop this stupid notion of letting him walk and saying we can just draft a rb to take his place, we have so many holes to fill on this team why does it make sense to try and fill a hole we already filled in Martin that’s just stupid, a few million a yr doesn’t make a difference, remember we let Dunn go for the thought of cap space saving etc, he left and had like 4-5 yrs of outstanding football for our rivals of all things
Good point about V Jax getting paid and being hurt. Also a good point by Seat26 about McCoy for the same reasons. Martin is a good team mate and seems well liked by all. So he was hurt for 2 of the 4 years. Really it was a blessing in disguise. Less tread on the tires for those two wasted years where Schiano and Freeman lost the team. The next year was Lovie hiring a non starter in Tedford. Those offenses were going nowhere fast. Last year though, he was one of the best at his position and he faced 8 in the box 78% of the time. He is worth at least 7 million(half of VJax and 1/3 or McCoy) per year. Pay him.
I totally agree with you JonnyG. We can’t let our best players walk and create a new “need”. If another team is willing to pay him, we certainly should be willing to pony up enough to keep him in our backfield.
Que Sera! Sera!
Don’t think Bucs will pay him more than 5 million/year. Question is will anyone else. Some injuries, fumbles,etc. I doubt anyone steps up much over 5 but who knows…..
Very valid points made for singing Martin whereas the only reason not to sign him is he was injured for two years and money.
Well the Bucs have plenty of money under the cap space so what would they be aving it for.
As far as the injuries, see Seat26’s reply.
If Martin hits FA, he will be the top FA RB and someone will cough up the money and be glad to do it.
Look, I want the GM/Owners to spend all the Cap money; I’m for it. My thinking is to also go after more quality free agents because we need help in several areas and you need money because some of the players signed won’t be worth it and will be gone in a year or two. I give up; pay Martin eight to ten million and sign one less quality player.
Horse-You say you’re all for going after more quality free agents, but don’t want to pay the top free agent(arguably) on the market in Doug Martin? Who has been more productive, is at a position of need, and entering their prime? He is also a great teammate. I wouldn’t rather have Demarco Murray or Ezekiel Elliot. Would you?? Look, just pay the guy. The Bucs wisely opted out of the 5th year because Martin wasn’t a factor the previous two disastrous seasons due to injury. Schiano’s last year was awkward with Freeman and the fan base and Lovie’s first year with Tedford was a colossal train wreck.
If they can find some middle ground at 6.5-7 million per year, they should sign him. If his agent plays hardball and decides to get offers from Oakland, San Fran, NYG, Dallas, or Indianapolis I think he gets his jackpot either way. I’d rather see him in Tampa.
We all have opinions; It’s not going to effect my life if Martin signs 5, 8, 10 million a year contract.
With the “massive” amount of cap room for 2016, that must be spent, why are the BUCS on the cheap for Doug Martin. His locker room presence and relationship with Winston are very important to “building through the draft.” If the BUCS let him walk through free agency, he will clearly sign with another team. Let’s not make another free agenct mistake. Does the name of Michael Bennett ring a bell?
6.5-7 mill is fair….and if you are worried about the money, have no bonus, but a high per year deal…guarantee the 1st 2 years…
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