The Buccaneers unloaded strong safety Mark Barron, the team’s first-round pick in 2012, to in a trade with St. Louis for fourth- and sixth-round picks in the 2015 NFL Draft. Tampa Bay also dealt linebacker Jonathan Casillas and the team’s sixth-round pick to New England for the Patriots’ fifth-rounder.
With the NFL Draft less than three months away, what other Buccaneers could be dealt in an effort to stockpile picks and fill the team’s many holes by rebuilding through the draft? Over the next three days, PewterReport.com will look at the top three players that could be on the trading block this spring, and started with quarterback Mike Glennon, who has started 19 games over the past two seasons. Today, PewterReport.com examines the pros and cons of trading running back Doug Martin.
Why There Is A Market For Martin
Whether you like Martin or don’t think too much of him, one thing is undeniable. The 5-foot-9, 215-pound running back made the Pro Bowl as a rookie after rushing for a Tampa Bay rookie record 1,454 yards and 11 touchdowns on 319 carries (4.6 avg.), in addition to catching 49 passes for 472 yards and one touchdown in 2012. Unlike the slew of talented running backs poised to enter the 2015 NFL Draft, they have yet to log their first carry in the pros, nor have their scored their first NFL touchdown.
Aside from Martin being a proven commodity in the NFL, he comes with good credentials, as he was a first-round draft pick in 2012. Martin has yet to hit free agency and there is likely a team or two that loved him when he came out of the draft and now has the opportunity to acquire him. However, with the failed trade of former top 5 overall pick in Trent Richardson to Indianapolis for a first-round pick, most teams would be leery about surrendering a premium draft pick for another running back, especially when there is a stacked running back class in the 2015 draft.
Martin has a year left on his rookie deal with an option for one more, which has to be appealing to NFL teams due to his low salary of roughly $1.3 million. When healthy, as he was during his rookie season, Martin has proven he can carry the load, evidenced by 319 carries during the 2012 campaign.
While he does have some work to do in terms of improving as a pass protector and a receiver out of the backfield, Martin is known for having a good work ethic. He is considered to be a great teammate from a chemistry standpoint. His skill set translates into almost any offense and that makes Martin a tradable commodity.
Why The Bucs May Want To Keep Martin
When healthy and running behind a strong offensive line, Martin can be a productive running back. But is he is a special back? The current regime doesn’t think so, and that’s a big reason why Tampa Bay spent a third-round pick on Charles Sims in last year’s draft.
Despite the fact that Martin struggled mightily over the past two years with injuries and underwhelming performances, he did end the season on a high note, finally producing a 100-yard game this year in the season finale. The former Boise State star rushed for 108 yards on 19 carries (5.7 avg.) against New Orleans in Week 17.
More importantly, he rushed for 221 yards over the final three weeks and broke off some long runs – a 63-yarder against Carolina and a 45-yarder against New Orleans. Martin is still under contract in 2015 at a reasonably price, so if the team can’t get at least a middle-round pick for him there is no downside to keeping him for one more year.
Even if the Buccaneers decide to keep Martin and still draft another running back, the competition between those two, in addition to Sims and backup Bobby Rainey will only help Tampa Bay’s ground game this year. With 23 starts in the NFL, Martin brings experience to the Bucs’ backfield. Sims has yet to start a game and any rookie Tampa Bay brings into the fold is in the same situation.
What Should The Bucs Do With Martin?
Tampa Bay’s running game really struggled in 2014, and despite Martin leading the team with 494 yards and two touchdowns, it took him until the last game of the year to surpass Rainey, who only started four games, to receive that distinction. Martin struggles to make defenders miss and create on his own, and seems to be the type of back that can only be productive with clean blocking and wide-open looks. That’s what the film has shown, especially over the past two years as he had just two 100-yard games in his last 17 starts.
The fact that Martin had a strong finish to the season with nearly 200 yards rushing against Carolina and New Orleans combined – sandwiched in between a 10-carry, 17-yard (1.7 avg.) effort against Green Bay – should help up his trade value. If he can fetch anywhere between a third- to fifth-round pick, the Bucs should definitely trade Martin and use the pick to find a starter at another position or another running back to compete with Sims for the starting job in 2015. Tampa Bay could even package Martin and another pick to move up within a round to draft a starting-caliber offensive lineman, pass rusher or defensive back.
With such a deep draft at the running back position, are several interesting late-round picks, the Bucs can use a fifth-, sixth- or seventh-round pick on another rusher like Louisville’s Dominique Brown (fifth), South Dakota State’s Zach Zenner (sixth) or North Dakota State’s John Crockett (seventh) to add to the mix. Running backs always slide in the draft, and it’s possible that a player like Minnesota’s David Cobb could slip into the fourth round, or Northern Iowa’s David Johnson could even fall into the fifth, in which case those players would be steals for Tampa Bay.
Whether it’s due to the amount of carries he received in college in addition to his initial campaign in 2012, or various injuries he’s suffered, Martin is not the same back that he was as a rookie. Tampa Bay would be wise to deal Martin and move on, and take advantage of a deep draft at the running back position to find a quick-twitch back that is more elusive and has better hands.
In case you missed the first part of the Trade Bait series, you can click here to read about QB Mike Glennon.
Scott Reynolds is in his 23rd year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR’s Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds enjoys giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his sons’ Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: [email protected]
I’m not going to trade a young pro bowl RB that’s still got his knees because he had the unfortunate luxury of running behind Gilkey, Cousins, and Omameh.
I don’t share the idea that today’s NFL teams need a special RB. They need a tandem of reliable blocking, non-fumbling, healthy, RBs that can also receive out of the backfield (that’s special if you ask me!).
Let Charles Sims develop into that special RB if he can. Martin, Rainey, and Sims all have the ability to score from anywhere on the field when they touch the ball. And all of them collectively cost less than one half of Adrian Peterson.
If I were to replace a RB, I would replace Mike James with a late round big back like David Johnson/NIU or Dominique Brown/Louisville. If they are going to keep Luke Stocker, they do not need a FB.
Let sleeping dogs lie. There are better places to look to improve this team than raiding the RB room!
keep him unless someone wants to give us a 2nd
I personally would not trade him for a third-5th RD pick. Talk about being on the losing end. The kid had a couple injuries. It happens. He’s healthy and has a year left. Let’s see what he does this year. He had almost 1500 yards with a pretty good NOT outstanding line. Now with the worst line in the league and injuries its time to deal him gone for a late rd pick? I think Tampa constant getting rid of pretty good players in search of diamonds in the rough has not worked and is getting old. Fix the frigging O line!!!!! Only trade if it’s a superb deal because whoever we get in replacement never works out.
here here or is it hear hear? keep him
I think we both posted same thoughts simultaneously Mac. Lol.
Trade him for a serviceable OL man. It does not matter who the RB is with the crap OL we have.
chuckle–snort–gafaww–magoobee 😉 I agree with the crap OL part, but I think that’s why you keep him. We have holes everywhere on this roster, why create another one? Did the Vikes waste AP? Did Wyld Stallions need Eddie Van Halen? Did they enjoy their success anyway? To me this seems like washing the windshield of the El Camino on blocks in the yard. There are bigger issues, and his trade value doesn’t come close to addressing them.
Martin is nothing special. He broke that 63 yarder and got caught from behind. He doesn’t have that breakaway speed or that second gear that above average backs have. He can’t get to the outside as he is strictly a between the tackles type of RB. If we can get a mid round for him I would jump at the chance. Then I would look for a bigger back with speed that doesn’t go down with the first hit, someone like the back we had in Blount.
Ultimately I agree with Macabee and Fredster but I do believe this was a tougher call than whether to trade Glennon or not. It’s a seller’s market at QB because there are no good FA QB’s or QB’s in the draft after the first two. At RB though this is a great draft class, especially if you like big bruising backs which are en vogue right now because of the playoff success of Lynch, Blount and Lacy. In the FA market you have Murray and probably Peterson. Thus it’s a buyer’s market at RB so we’ll by definition get less value in return on Martin than we would give up. Simms to me is a future Shane Vereen so there is plenty of room on this team for another feature RB to compliment him, but for now Martin has shown enough to be that guy for one more year.
STOP the madness of trying to fix the titanic by repainting the smoke stack…sure it looks like it could use a new lick of paint but when we’re heading to the bottom of the ocean nobody cares about the smoke stack…plug up the damn holes!!!
EastEndBoy…Like your comparison to fixing the holes on the team. Yes,there is many holes!
So let me get this straight. We should trade Glennon so that in a year after McCown is 36 and off the books we can draft somebody to develop as a backup. Now lets trade Doug Martin so that we can draft another RB. This is truely the blind leading the blind if any of these trades occur. Trade 2 proven, young players that arent costing probably 2 mill combined and then create holes at both positions. Seriously whats the logic behind any of this? As many have already posted we have far too many areas of need to go around creating depth issues where there presently is none. Be smart these players will find good homes like most of the other castoff Bucs. More piss disguised as rain smh.
What has Glennon proven? The offense has ranked at the bottom of the league whenever he’s been in charge of it. If you like Glennon and want to talk about the potential that he would realize with better pass protection that’s fine, but he hasn’t proven anything. At least Martin has had a great season.
Glennon’s 4000+ yards and 2:1 TD to INT ratio over 19 games show me that hes at the very least a capable backup. Taking into consideration the 2 HCs and 1.5 OCs in 2 seasons whose to say he couldnt develop into more with NFL caliber teaching which up until this point he hasn’t had. It makes no sense to head into the offseason looking to get rid of Glennon when McCown and his 5 mill salary are still in town. I’d like to see us draft Jameis or Mariotta and have them pushed by Glennon rather than mentored by McCown.
let the muscle hamster play his last year and see what we have…Im not a big fan of the guy and think he is a bit over valued,but he has talent~something we need to keep in town.We have let too many good players go with very little to show for it.He either has a good year and we keep him or a bad one and we then give him the heave ho…
I’d trade Martin for a 4th or 5th Round pick. NO doubt about it. Martin’s best performances have come against the weakest of run defenses over the past few years. That excitement that was surrounding him is far gone. It’s funny to see people bring up the O-line and the “let’s see what he can do..” when speaking on the RB position, but totally dismiss it when talking about the QB position.
Tomorrow in part 3 my guess is we will hear how trading Vincent Jackson makes sense bc he’s old, his cap number is high and all the value players we could go sign with the freed up cap space lol. It’s starting to become painfully obvious why we havent won a playoff game since the SuperBowl.
If your point is that we need to become wiser Bucs fans and media analysts I agree. I made the point during the season after one of our blowout losses that maybe it’s us. The management, coaching and players change but we still lose. I believe we as fans and the local media are partially to blame for the state of this team because we are the ones that create momentum for changes that we want to see in the team and put pressure on the decision makers at One Buc to make them. I think we put pressure on them to ultimately make the wrong decision more often than we care to admit.
Martin’s value has dropped so we can trade him or not, but we still need another big back.
I’d say trade RB martin, and selecta qood qualitely player in return. If RB is their at 34 like rb from Wisc I’d say draft him he could be a starter from day one go bucs.
Trade Doug Martin and use his value for help on the offensive line.
I think that neither Glennon or Martin should be traded. Winning teams have depth. This seems to be this repetitious cycle of dumping depth for lower than expected picks that generally don’t pan out. I’d also try to resign Clayborn and Foster for the same reason. Give some of these players a chance to develop over a few years… ala Blount, Bennett, Talib. With that and the addition of Winston & Perryman, I think the Bucs would be headed back up that long, long hill. e
I can’t see any team giving up more than a 6th/7th rounder for Martin
Martin showed that he can be a great back his rookie year with a decent o-line. I’m hesitant to trade him as I would hate to watch him return to his rookie form elsewhere….much like Marshawn Lynch after leaving the Bills. His stats declined similar to Martin http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/stats/_/id/10456/marshawn-lynch
The question is mute. No team is trading anything for Martin. As Scott said, it’s a deep draft for R.B.’s, you can get a better, cheaper back in the 6th round, it wouldn’t make sense to trade for Martin.
Funny how we want to trade Martin for a 3rd-5th rounder when we spend a 3rd last year on RB Sims- who would not get us a 7th if we tried to trade him now..licht/lovie were impatient. Martin is a pro bowler- got injured and returned behind the most historically bad Oline tampa has ever seen..by the way we played last year I dont think demarco murray would have made 1000 yrds
Are you on something?
Scott what is it with Doug Martin did he kick your dog or something? Why in the hell the hurry to trade Martin? He was finally rounding into form the last few games and now you want to trade him.The only reason Martin didnt produce like in the past is, i hate to say this schiano knew how to use him. Feed him the ball ,get him the carries and the big runs will come. Get off his ass he is still a good running back!!!!!
You don’t break up with your girlfriend until you have another prettier date for the Prom. You don’t ditch Doug Martin with only Rainey and Sims on your dance card.
I am not and never was that impressed with Martin. He is average at best. I do agree the line impacted his play, but we could get the same production from an UFA. Fresh legs is my call.
The offensive line was so terrible that I really cannot evaluate Martin’s play. Did he fall off or just not get any blocking. That the latter seems true and obvious doesn’t mean he didn’t also drop off. One thing I am sure of is that Sims has not PROVEN himself. Even though he improved it is still all potential and promise. Don’t let a star go unless you are 100% sure you have his replacement. We made the same argument for Vincent Jackson and it applies here as well.
I’m going to step to the side of the argument that stlbucsfan is on. Getting rid of Glennon or Martin is depth killing. Neither is costing us very much and are far better options than anyone we can get. Some of the opposing camp are saying get rid of Martin and draft someone…WHY, when we can just keep Martin and draft another position like OL maybe. I’m with getting rid of McCown too and keeping Glennon but and here’s why. Does anyone really think that Glennon is in Lovie’s plans,at all. I’m sure Glennon doesn’t want to be here any longer either plus we all know the love affair Lovie has with McCown. It just seems stupid to keep coaching up guys and then getting rid of them because fans are tired of them.
I wouldn’t be so anxious to trade Martin. He has been injured and 2013 was a throw away year as a result. It took most of 2014 for him to regain his form. Serious injuries just don’t effect the body, but the mind as well. I think Doug is back strong in 2015. Hopefully he will have a better O-line to run behind as well. If the Bucs coaches doubt him, then I doubt the Bucs coaches know what they are doing.
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