Hopes that running back Doug Martin would be back on the practice field on Monday as the Bucs prepare to host the Bears, were dashed as the team took the field at 10:10 a.m. without No. 22 earlier today. At least during the 30 minute portion of practice that was open to the media.

The position went from bad to worse with the news that Antone Smith, who was injured late in last Thursday night’s matchup with the Falcons, was placed on injured reserve. The team promoted undrafted rookie Russell Hansbrough from the practice squad to the active roster after placing Smith on IR according to Tampa Times reporter Greg Auman.

The Bucs luck with injuries to their running backs is almost unbelievable.

The Bucs lost Martin in Week 2 against the Cardinals with a hamstring injury, and the former Boise State star hasn’t seen the field since. Tampa Bay went with Charles Sims next with poor results, and then lost him after the Denver Broncos game with a knee injury. Jacquizz Rodgers was the Bucs next man up, and the former Oregon State standout played well through nearly three games before suffering a foot injury late in the Bucs loss to the Raiders. Tampa Bay signed Smith last month, but he went down in the fourth quarter of last Thursday night’s game against the Falcons with a knee injury and is lost for the season.

Former Bucs running back Mike James was signed last week and now is in the rotation with rookie Peyton Barber and Hansbrough. Bucs general manager Jason Licht is no doubt scouring the waiver wire for any available help, but the hope that Martin returns soon is the best case scenario for a team decimated by injuries at running back.

Wide receiver Louis Murphy was also a no-show on Monday which doesn’t bode well for his return this season. Monday was the deadline for his designated return under the 21-day window. The Bucs did get a bit of good news as defensive tackle Clinton McDonald was back on the field with the team.

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About the Author: Mark Cook

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, the beach and family time.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]
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RootsCrew
RootsCrew
5 years ago

The RB situation at Tampa is beyond comical at this point. I’ve never seen anything like this when it comes to injuries. I can’t see Doug significantly contributing until at least game 11. An truthfully, who would care at that point? We needed him back 3 games ago, and he can’t get off the trainers table. Ridiculous. With Sims, Quizz, Doug, & Murphy likely being out for the next 4-6 games, I really can’t see us having any chance of finishing better than 5-11 or 6-10. The defense can’t stop anybody, and offense can’t score enough points. Disaster.

BucWild02
BucWild02
Reply to  RootsCrew
5 years ago

Vikings, Giants, Lions, Packers, Eagles, Panthers, Jags, Raiders, Bills, Bears, Chiefs, Chargers, Ravens, and Bucs have all lost their previous season’s leading rusher for most, if not all, of the year this year. Quit whining about how unbelievable it is that Doug got injured.

RootsCrew
RootsCrew
Reply to  BucWild02
5 years ago

Thanks for that informative response. I’m not whining about Doug being injured. Did those teams have their #1, #2, #3, & #4 RB go down with injuries in the first 8 games? No? Then shut up if you don’t understand the post. It shouldn’t be that difficult to understand the Bucs RB situation is ridiculous.

wnb0395
wnb0395
Reply to  BucWild02
5 years ago

Bucwild02, I dont know what your smoking but I want some. Of all those teams you just listed, only 3 of them have lost there leading rusher for more than 3 games this year. Vikings, Lions, and the Packers. All three of which are struggling this year. Of those 3 teams, only the Vikings had a leading rusher who topped 800 yards last season. 3 of the teams you listed haven’t even lost a RB this season (Eagles, Jags, and the Ravens). Giants lost Jennings for 3 games, Panthers lost Stewart for 3 games, Raiders lost Murry for 2 games,… Read more »

MudManVA
MudManVA
5 years ago

I’m sorry but this isn’t a contract year for Martin. He only plays the majority of his games in contract years. This is the year after the contract year, so we’ll be lucky to see him in 50% of this year games.

Matthew
Matthew
Reply to  MudManVA
5 years ago

honestly think we should get rid of Doug. I love Doug Martin when he plays but we cant count on him

BucWild02
BucWild02
Reply to  MudManVA
5 years ago

Injuries happen. It’s not Martin’s fault that he got hurt. I, for one, am really glad he re-upped with the Bucs. He’s part of the solution, not part of the problem.

wnb0395
wnb0395
Reply to  BucWild02
5 years ago

He is def part of the solution this year isn’t he. lol

htownbucfan03
htownbucfan03
5 years ago

Just ir him then try and trade him or cut him it’s just not worth it I mean we bagged luke stocker cuz he was always hurt and last year it was asj but I’m sick of peanut brittle Martin cuz he doesn’t have break away speed that elite backs have basically he was the second leading rusher cuz that’s what this offense is quizz was having success and he was a street free agent so that tells all u need to know cut Martin draft a difference maker

Matthew
Matthew
Reply to  htownbucfan03
5 years ago

couldn’t agree more

BucWild02
BucWild02
Reply to  htownbucfan03
5 years ago

What a wrong headed, short sighted comment. Martin has just as many TD’s this year than Mr. Durable, break away elite talent LEveon Bell. ANd Martin only played in 1 complete game.

Michael WestDominguez
Michael WestDominguez
5 years ago

I say trade him for the upcoming draft to someone for some picks (he’s out way too much) and is more of a liability than an asset at this point. The way we are looking, we will be in position to draft Dalvin Cook, Fornette, a receiver like Mike Williams (Clemson) or Calvin Ridley even the defensive end from A&M and peppers from Michigan who can play LB or safety, grab a safety in free agency, draft a receiver, LB, and a DE as mentioned as well as another safety/corner. Chris Conte-see ya!, Mcdouglad-inconsistent so I’m gonna say no, Grimes… Read more »

Michael WestDominguez
Michael WestDominguez
5 years ago

Also, did anybody read we just signed Josh Huff (Receiver), those are the kind of signings that our GM makes. Dip shit ones!

BucWild02
BucWild02
Reply to  Michael WestDominguez
5 years ago

The first time he scores a TD or makes a real contribution, just remember what a dipshit move it was considering the large number of available free agents there are in the middle of the season.

Michael WestDominguez
Michael WestDominguez
Reply to  BucWild02
5 years ago

BucWild, I hope you are right on that one, I’ll be the first to say I was wrong.

plopes808
plopes808
5 years ago

At this point, if it wasn’t for teams like the Browns and Niners, we’d have the top draft pick again. At least we’ll have a high enough position to fill some needs…time to start scouring the scouting reports

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
5 years ago

Geez, you other commenters above me sound like a bunch of ninnies. Seriously. Hamstring injuries are extremely common in the NFL and anybody who knows anything about them – apparently not including you guys – knows that hamstring injuries are very difficult to get over. Doug Martin is bar none the best running back we’ve had for many many years on the Bucs, since Cadillac Williams before he blew out his knee. He got hurt. He’s trying to get back, but if you come back too soon you end up staying on the bench much longer. Running backs get hurt… Read more »

NaplesKrewe
NaplesKrewe
Reply to  Naplesfan
5 years ago

Agree with you on that one. Hamstring injuries can lag and linger. But Martin has been down and out so often in his time with the Bucs it’s turning into the rule not the exception.

But hell, i’ve still got the flag waving in the yard and i’m still watching the games! Had to explain to my wife it’s still mathematically possible to make the playoffs…. keep the faith.

Michael WestDominguez
Michael WestDominguez
Reply to  Naplesfan
5 years ago

Naplesfan……I respect all of your comments but if you want to disrespect that of other folks in this forum, feel free to go to an ESPN thread and then you can vent and name call all day and night if you want.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Michael WestDominguez
5 years ago

When the commenters are blasting the best runner on the team for daring to be injured – which is exactly what they are doing – I’m going to call them all out by writing that they “sound like a bunch of ninnies”. If the shoe fits, wear it. It’s not name calling – it’s telling it like it is. If you want to go to ESPN and vent, fine, go there. I’m calling out the venting ninnies, and will continue to do so.

Michael WestDominguez
Michael WestDominguez
Reply to  Naplesfan
5 years ago

No one said “daring” to be injured, speaking about my comment specifically, I said he has been out an awful lot and not just this year so he seems to be more of a liability than an asset. Not sure if that was even the comment you were referring to or not. In any case, the shoe doesn’t fit me, I wear combat boots.

NaplesKrewe
NaplesKrewe
5 years ago

Its not a surprise to anyone that the only real productive seasons out of Martin were his rookie season and his contract season. 2012 16 games and 1454 yards 2013 6 games for 456 yards 2014 11 games 494 yards 2015 16 games for 1402 2016 ~1.5 games for 85 yards. There is not doubting the skills when he plays. But what good is he on the bench? I’m sure the front office will do something brilliant like send him to the Patriots for a long snapper and a 6th round pick. He’ll meet up with ASJ there and win… Read more »

plopes808
plopes808
Reply to  NaplesKrewe
5 years ago

and the award for best post of the day goes to…

This gave me a good laugh, sometimes that’s all u can do. Hoping for the best but like other posters have said, we don’t want him coming back TOO early and going back on the shelf even longer

drdneast
drdneast
5 years ago

Naplesfan, you sound much more knowledgeable than those who are posting above you. I particularly like the guys who say Martin doesn’t have breakaway speed like a lot of RB’s. I watch NFL games every Sunday and watch countless backs get caught from behind by CB’s because they are faster hands down. Other than Adrian Peterson, I’d like to know what RB’s are out there that can’t get caught from behind by a CB who isn’t having to dodge tacklers. Comments like that are what drive me bonkers about all of these wannabe GM’s. You are absolutely right about the… Read more »

cgmaster27
cgmaster27
Reply to  drdneast
5 years ago

The problem is drd, is not Martins talent, or the length of a hamstring injuries. It’s more the fact that some players are just injury prone, and that’s a fact of football. Doug Martin has played 2 full seasons in 6. That’s terrible no matter how good he is. As for the breakaway speed, I watched Ezekial Elliot do it this week, David Johnson, Le’veon Bell, Darren Sproles, AP, Jamal Charles, guys like that. Doug simply doesn’t have break away speed., he’s a damn physical runner , which is great , but for his accident proneness, if that’s a word,… Read more »

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  cgmaster27
5 years ago

The average length of an NFL career for running backs is 3 seasons. Many of the very best, most productive running backs in the league have spent a lot of game weeks on the bench or sent to IR … including such luminaries as Adrian Peterson, Todd Gurley, Derrick Henry, Eddy Lacy, Tevin Coleman, Jamaal Charles, and yes, Charles Sims and Doug Martin. A total of 34 NFL running backs are out on injury or on IR as of today, just halfway through the season. The problem is getting worse as the years go on. The defensive linemen keep getting… Read more »

wnb0395
wnb0395
Reply to  Naplesfan
5 years ago

Of those luminaries you mentioned only four of them I would consider to be productive (AP, Gurley, Lacy, and Charles). What do I consider productive? Rushing for more than 1000 yards in any season. AP has missed more than 2 games in a season for 30% of his career (3 of 10). That means AP has played 14 of 16 games a season for 7 of his 10 seasons Lacy has missed more than 1 game a season for 25% of his career (1 0f 4). Charles has missed more than 1 game in a season for 33% of his… Read more »

drdneast
drdneast
5 years ago

Oh, one more thing.
I am so tired of ASJ and his relatives posting out her, especially the last one.
You lampoon Martin for being injured and then you cry about ASJ not being on the team.
ASJ lived on the bench with his malingering injuries and his drinking problem.
Such a hypocrite you are.
BTW, I don’t think ASJ has played a regular season down for the Jets because of an injury. Another one.

JerEazy
JerEazy
Reply to  drdneast
5 years ago

I don’t think anyone cried about ASJ not being on the team. It’s called a joke.

Horse
Horse
5 years ago

How about Licht scanning the wire and other PS teams for some defensive players?

fredster
fredster
5 years ago

Martin not healthy yet? Wow big surprise. Guy just been so frustrating with the injuries. Couple good years and bunch of crap. He’s healthy 1400 yards every year easy. Just can’t stay healthy. Not saying he’s not hurt either just saying he’s not done much except 2 years. Dr. d your comets are so condescending at times. Everyone is GM wannabes here? Wtf are you then? Lol. Your tired of ASJ relatives? I got tired of Lovie relatives (you) posting here last year. ASJ was a jackass and I said so last year. Got blasted here by so many saying… Read more »