LeGarrette Blount, Doug Martin Bonding

June 14th, 2012

Joe can see it now: Bucs fans are already taking sides.

There is the LeGarrette Blount faction that believes his talents were grossly misused by the previous offensive coaches, who did their best to slander the man in a desperate attempt to save their jobs.

Then, there are the Blount haters, who swallowed former Bucs offensive coordinator Greg Olson’s words whole, about how Blount was liable for just about every ill in the world from drought in the Midwest to the rise of the Taliban in Afghanistan.

So for those who are of the mind that there is tension between Blount and Martin, think again, so Martin told Joe after minicamp at One Buc Palace today.

In fact, the two are bros, Martin said, and the running backs as a whole are bonding like a family. When Joe asked Martin if he had developed any relationship with Blount yet, Martin didn’t hold back.

“Oh yeah, of course! We are awesome,” Martin said. “He’s a funny guy both on and off the field.”

(No, Martin wasn’t doing a Joe Pesci act. In fact, Martin confessed he has never seen “Goodfellas.”)

In fact, Martin enjoys Blount’s sense of humor, which he said will come out in meeting rooms to needle fellow running backs from time to time.

“We crack a few jokes. We have a lot of characters [among the running backs].”

Rather than there being friction between the two in their quest for touches, Martin said that he and Blount are good for each other. Martin motivates Blount to be the best he can be and Martin said Blount motives him to be his best self.

And the winner is the Bucs.

“You are competing with everybody,” Martin said. “All it will do is make everybody better. Competition is better for all of us.”

51 Responses to “LeGarrette Blount, Doug Martin Bonding”

  1. BigBear Says:

    No matter who you want to win, this is great for the team. They will become better players over all with this type of competition. It’s great to know the position is set with talent and depth, Madu tearing it up, Smith’s quickness, etc. This is a feeling I haven’t had in couple years: confidence in our offensive backfield.

    …Well I guess I did in 2009 when I thought Derrick Ward could play at a high level here.

  2. robert Says:

    This is what builds great teams. in business and in sport. the ability to have fun, compete and learn. I feel a lot better about the RB situation after hearing this. I liked our backs, just not all the hype about about whose 1st and who’s second and wondered if that would foster animousity. appears not. GO BUCS!

  3. kh Says:

    Tired of your sh-t about this Joe, my criticisms of Blount have absolutely nothing to do with Greg Olsen or any comments made by former coaches. Its stems from the numerous times that I’ve watched Blount with my own eyes dancing in holes and being unable to pick up half a f’n yard when he’s 250 lbs. Or the other instances that I’ve watched him fumble countless times last year.

    Quit acting as though he’s infallible and should be excused from any criticism, it’s ridiculously annoying.

  4. BOb Says:

    like omg guys…….im like so team martin. is that what your going for joe?

    also, im loving the nonpartisan objectivity shown for the two sides. ***

  5. dan Says:

    COUNTLESS times? pretty sure there is a specific number that HAS been counted. Just saying your using some exaggeration there KH… and yeah YOUR eyes must be special and better eyes than the rest of us since you cant count to 3 (two of which were in tennesse where everyone on both teams fumbled alot, so i would say each one of his fumbles only counts for half a strike against him)

  6. McBuc Says:

    KH…Many of last year fumbles were due to the extra effort to get a few yards while carying a pile…just like number 40’s fumbles were. To have the two year yardage that he has with virtually no training before either season, is pretty damn good. Now he has time to work with the team. I do not care which one of these guys is there for the first snap, or who gets more touches, as long they produce on the field. There are 31 other teams that would scoop LB up if he hit the streets.

  7. thomas 2.2 Says:

    If you dont think that Joe has an agenda on this consider his descriptions of the 2 sides:

    A) the LeGarrette Blount faction that believes his talents were grossly misused by the previous offensive coaches, who did their best to slander the man in a desperate attempt to save their jobs.

    B) the Blount haters, who swallowed former Bucs offensive coordinator Greg Olson’s words whole, about how Blount was liable for just about every ill in the world from drought in the Midwest to the rise of the Taliban in Afghanistan.

    the pro-Blount’s “believe,” but the anti-Blount’s “swallow” and hold him “liable.”

    Hey Joe – this isn’t pro or anti Blount, its pro-buc. Those of us who have a clue – say that Martin is an all-around player who is better for Free and the offense, and Blount should be his solid backup getting 5-10 carries a game.

    If you cant recognize that LB’s college and pro coaches, all, did not trust him in the passing game then you are just ignorant on the subject, and it has little to do with his hands – its his inability to read the play and pick up the blitz or release properly and run the correct route.

  8. kh Says:

    Your stats are wrong, Blount has 9 fumbles in roughly 400 touches in his NFL career, including 5 last year.

  9. kh Says:

    For a big RB he’s absolutely pathetic in short yardage situations too.

  10. McBuc Says:

    I like that this staff has Blount with the vast majority of snaps with the starting team, they are using thee rest occasionally. They are going to make rookie earn the spot…which again really does not matter. I love blount, but I predict he will lose the starting role mid way thru training camp…of course I could be wrong.

  11. McBuc Says:

    The three are the ones he lost…

  12. dan Says:

    Thomas your marks against blount are things that either be taught well and not learned, or taught poorly. Some of us tend to believe that NONE of the buccaneers runningbacks last year picked up blitzes well, or read plays well. We therefore think, hey, if it was one guy who was dumb, then he is dumb, if they are all failing, then it must be a poor lesson tolearn from.

    Of course you cant make the assumption that he CAN learn it from that, but a bucaneer who broke 1000 yards in 10 starts (13 games played) i think deserves some extra effort in teaching.

  13. dan Says:

    sorry kh, i was reading from the fumbles lost column. still, five is hardly ‘countless’

  14. Eric Says:

    Havent been this happy since Sonny and Cher sang together one last time.

    “i got you babe”

    I might have to sue someone to balance this out

  15. Andrewbucsfan Says:

    Great read joe. Can’t wait to see these two tag teaming defenses, both wearing them down so the other can come in and do what they do best. Blunts and martins relationship and success go hand and hand. They could be quite the tandem. Unlike many bucs haters that claim to be fans I just can’t seem to forget the 2010 run against the cardinals and the 2011 run against the pakers, the guy can pound the rock.

  16. kh Says:

    5 is a lot considering the 200 touches he had last year, that’s about one per every 40 touches. The average RB fumbles about once every 60 touches. Blounts’ fumble ratio is on par with some of the leagues worst offenders.

    Thats a subjective analysis and not based on Joe’s emotions.

  17. MakoPSK Says:

    The running game is the thing I’m most excited to see. The combination of Martin, LGB, Smith/Madu, and the revamped O-line looks on paper to be a dominant force. Going to be a lot of sore DB’s around the league.

  18. dan Says:

    i give him a pass on the 2 he lost in tenesee everyone on both sides of the ball was fumbling that day, i was there, it was brutal weather. 3 out of 200? thats closer to 70 and above average, but say you only take away the first one that day, (he should have learned his lesson after the first one) and say he fumbled once every 50 touches last year which is only slightly below average. (and something that can be coached with proper coaching)

  19. dan Says:

    Hassleback, Chris Johnson, Mike williams, all had a fumble, and freeman had 2.

  20. BigBear Says:

    How does “countless” turn into 5?

    I have to agree with Thomas saying “this isn’t pro or anti Blount, its pro-buc. Those of us who have a clue – say that Martin is an all-around player who is better for Free and the offense, and Blount should be his solid backup”

    I do really like the way Blount runs and he can certainly be used much more effectively. It is more likely that Blount will get 10-15 touches and Martin will have 15-20. Nice balance all around 🙂

  21. kh Says:

    Good grief, get over using “countless,” I didn’t feel like looking it up. He fumbles more then he should and more then the NFL average for a starting RB. That needs to change if he wants to be the man.
    “Unlike many bucs haters that claim to be fans I just can’t seem to forget the 2010 run against the cardinals and the 2011 run against the pakers, the guy can pound the rock”

    Comments like this drive me insane, I’m as big of a Bucs fan as there is but I won’t let a handful of breathtaking highlight reel runs overshadow his obvious faults, which are plain to see for any objective Buc fan.

  22. OAR Says:

    You guys are too funny. We haven’t even had training camp or pre-season games and you know who’s starting and who’s getting how many carries this season.
    I just hope Ashton Martin and Peterbilt Blount can get it done for us this year in the running game!


    I guess I’m in group C re: Blount. I’ve see some very exceptional things that he’s done. But, he’s struggled with some things too.

    Primarily, it’s the short yardage stuff. I don’t always see him hitting the hole like he should. And, even if the line didn’t make much a hole, that guy is so big, he’s just plow into everything (like Pittman), and fall forward for a few yards. Heck, Warrick Dunn hit it like he was 250lbs. Blount hesitates at times. So, that’s a concern.

    I haven’t seen him catch enough to know how good he is as a receiver.

    Hopefully, Byner can coach him and the backfield will be stacked.

  24. Garv Says:

    “And the winner is……the Bucs.”

    Yeah….pretty much.

    Nice V Jackson read as well.

    Love the “expert” takes from message board posters who are anything but.
    BUT……then again, my calling anyone an “expert” is HARDLY a compliment.

    NEXT MONTH!!!!!!

  25. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    I am not surprised that Blount and Martin have hit it off.
    Martin seems very easygoing and laid back, vs the more Alpha Male Blount.
    Plus, everyone remembers Blount has knockout power, in his hands!
    Martin especially should remember this, since Blount knocked his Boise State teammate OUT!

  26. mjmoody Says:

    Just so everyone is on the same page: the discussion is an UFA vs. a 1st round pick. A UFA with some pretty nice pro-tape. Is the 100K RB as good as the Million dollar RB? And if he is…what then?

  27. McBuc Says:

    MJmoody…That is the old argument, with the new rookie contracts it is not a sure thing to start the high paid rookie. All week Blount ran with the first team, and our million dollar back ran with the second team. I beleive that they will both be used, but the rookie will overcome during training camp.

    Odd, I agree with Thomas on this post…

    See, Eirc’s humor is why I keep defending him. I pretty much disagree with everything he says, but he is funny!

  28. T in Orlando Says:

    Blount does have a tendency to dance at the line, and no one can defend the fumbling issues. However for those critiquing his short yardage issues, it was a problem in 2010, not so much in 2011. That always seemed like a simple thing to fix, as his short yardage issues stemmed from the “dancing at the line”. If he was just told when the yardage to 1st down or endzone is less than 2 yards, to just hit the line where the hole is supposed to be, regardless of what you see, then he should have success more times than not, and he did in 2011 (granted, not a lot of opportunities when trailing by 20+ points).

    For those critiquing Blount’s pass catching, we hardly saw many opportunities to judge that the past two years, which can be partially placed at Olson’s feet, for not giving him a chance as a 3rd down back. As far as his pass protection, I just remember one really bad blown assignment (which I believe most of us remember), again in 2010, where Freeman was destroyed on his blindside when Blount missed the block. That was bad, but other than that, I don’t recall seeing too many blown assignments from him (again, he hasn’t had too many chances).

    All that being said, I think Martin will ultimately be the better back, I just also think Blount will be a hell of a 1A back.

  29. SilenceTheCritics Says:

    Im not going to say anything until I see Martin take a pro snap. Sure he was a good all around player in College. But the Pros is a whole new ballgame and right now he aint sh!t! Blount on the other hand already has a 1000 yard season under his belt… just sayin

  30. McBuc Says:

    T in Orlando…Hard to arue with you on that, you nailed it. He had somewhere around 14 or 15 catches last year, and somewhere around 150 yards (I do not feel like looking it up). I think he had half that in 2010.

  31. kh Says:

    “If he was just told when the yardage to 1st down or endzone is less than 2 yards, to just hit the line where the hole is supposed to be, regardless of what you see, then he should have success more times than not, and he did in 2011 (granted, not a lot of opportunities when trailing by 20+ points).”

    why does he have to be told though for god sakes? that’s obvious to any RB with half of a brain. It’s just basic football, if he doesnt understand that then there’s far bigger problems.

    And I would disagree with your assessment he got it in done in short yardage in 2011. I remember one game in particular (cant remember against who) where he wasnt getting it done in short yardage and being benched for Kregg f’n Lumpkin who was able to find a crease in short yardage for a first down.

  32. McBuc Says:

    OAR…Eric may be funny, but you still hold the crown!

  33. McBuc Says:

    KH…Adrian Peterson’s first three years…4, 9, and 7 fumbles…now, he has had one a year since then.

    To be fair to your argument, because you have a pretty good one, his fumble per carry % is different, those three years were AP’s most productive in yardage, over 1700 the year he dropped 9 balls on the ground. My point is let Blount mature and learn to hold onto the ball, just like Barber learned in NY.

  34. McBuc Says:

    KH, the NFL had him tanked at 28, so no mateer what you argument holds water. They also only count fumbles lost, and 3 is still in the high range. Some higher ranked guys like Jones-Drew lost the same amount, and Foster and Mathews lost more. I did not do the math, but I would guess the average is less than 2. I do not think we should give up on him, but when I look at the facts it is hard to argue with you. I do think you will see a change this year. He was ranked better in 2010, so let’s hope the best man gets the job and the Bucs tear it up!

    That is kind of a you where right moment, right?

  35. McBuc Says:

    I went to Pete Dutcher’s crash course in multiple posting! How did I do Pete? just kidding man, keep on posting away.

  36. crazy Says:

    Blount’s biggest weakness seemed to be that he wasn’t as coachable as a pro RB ought to be. If current reports are correct it sounds like he’s making a major effort to fix that. Let’s see what happens when the pads go on.

  37. OAR Says:

    Thank you, kind sir!
    BTW My crown is royal and comes in a purple velet pouch!

  38. OAR Says:

    Also, I agree with your multiple posts!
    Pete’s posts need to come with an epilogue

  39. kh Says:

    I’m not giving up on Blount, far from it, I like him a lot. I just take issue with Joe being so obtuse about him.

    My main point is that there’s plenty of valid reasons to criticize him beyond anything Greg Olsen or anyone else on the former coaching staff has said.

    When he says crap like that it insults my intelligence as a Bucs fan.

  40. hamilton Says:

    as a true bucs fan ,you should not care who is the rb ,as long as they get the job done.

  41. Tristan Berry Says:

    Last time I checked, someone with their own blog where they promote themselves as a commentator (or commentators, if you will) are under no obligation to be unbiased in their commentary. I happen to like and usually agree with the bias in Joe’s commentary which is why I like coming here. If there are people who don’t like Joe’s commentary, there’s a fix for that. It’s called Buccaneers.com.

  42. Joe Says:

    Thanks Tristan!

  43. Sambizle Says:

    Joe and Tristan,

    The losers and haters have nowhere else to go.

  44. BamBamBuc Says:

    OK, this is getting ridiculous. Did Blount fumble last year? Yes. Did he gain 4.2 yards per carry? Yes. Did he only get 184 carries? Yes. Did he only catch 15 passes? Yes.

    As has been stated, Adrian Peterson had a fumbling problem his first 3 seasons, it has been fixed. Difference is Peterson had full off-seasons to work with his team each of his first three years. Blount has had none until this year. If he can’t learn, that’s one thing, if he’s only had time to work on the playbook and game plan each week during the season… that’s another thing. Off-season is when they work on things like fumbling, or blitz pickup, or whatever areas are needed. During the season is when they work on gameplan.

    Think about this. Walter Payton’s first three years he fumbled 9, 10, & 11 times. Hall of Famer. Earl Campbell (big back) fumbled 9, 8, & 4. Hall of Famer. Emmitt Smith 7, 8, 4… Hall of Fame. Marcus Allen 5, 14, 8… Hall of Fame. Thurman Thomas 9, 7, 6 Hall of Fame. Erik Dickerson 13, 14, 10 Hall of Fame. I could go on… but you get the picture. Each of these guys has had fumbles but was good enough to be worth it regardless of them.

    Beyond that, Emmitt Smith didn’t reach 5.0 yards per attempt or more average until his 4th year. Payton took 3 years. Marcus Allen never topped it. Nor did Thurman Thomas. Earl Campbell took 3 years to reach that number.

    Campbell never was much of a pass receiver. Rarely had as many receptions as Blount did last year. Jerome Bettis was much the same (not HOF, but All Pro). Franco Harris was also not much of a receiver until the end of his career. Erik Dickerson had a good receiving rookie year, but averaged around 20 until late in his career with Indy.

    Now we can pick apart stats and say this guy had more receptions, or that guy had more carries hence more total yards. This guy was the “workhorse”. The point is, I’d take any of those Hall of Fame guys in their prime on our team and overlook the fumbles or few receptions or whatever. The teams they played for didn’t give up on them because of low yards per attempt or too many fumbles or lack of receiving skills. They had a purpose on their team and it worked. We have a guy in Blount that has some issues to correct and no off-season or coaching to correct it yet. But he has good numbers. He breaks big plays, he has been a game changer. Give a coaching staff time to work with him in the off-season and see what he can do. If he still dances too much behind the line and can’t pick up 1 yard… if he still fumbles too many “times per touch”… if he can’t pick up the passing game or blitz pickup… then we can move on and hope we didn’t let a future Hall of Fame guy go, but rather an undrafted flash in the pan.

  45. BigMacAttack Says:

    BamBam, you are the Man and always come through in the clutch. I don’t think you have fumbled once on this site. Great Job, again.

    I see Blount as much more of an asset than a liability. I hope Martin is even more of an asset. If Martin lives up to his billig this should be an awesome season. I don’t care who gets what as long as it works, and we all know how much punishment Rb’s take. Remember a few years ago when all of Gruden’s backs got hurt and Graham took over an almost put up a grand. The Saints have had numerous injured backs for the last several years. You just can’t have too many good RB’s and they will all earn their keep IMO. The Bucs also have this Hughes kid that is another 4.3 burner. Blount, Martin, Madu, Smith & Hughes, can’t probably keep them all, and somebody will be on the practice squad, but they may very well need all of them in 16 games. It is a good problem to have.

  46. BamBamBuc Says:

    Happy to oblige.

  47. Miguel Grande Says:

    Friends, Tampan’s, countrymen, lend me your ears;
    I come to bury LaGarrette, not to praise him.
    The evil that men do lives after them;
    The good is oft interred with their bones;
    So let it be with Blount. The noble Thomas 2.2
    Hath told you LaGarrete was ambitious:
    If it were so, it was a grievous fault,
    And grievously hath Blount answer’d it.
    Here, under leave of Thomas 2.2 and the rest –
    For Thomas is an honourable man;
    So are they all, all honourable men –
    Come I to speak in LaGarrete’s funeral.
    He was our friend, faithful and just to us:
    But Thomas says he was ambitious;
    And Thomas is an honourable man.
    He hath brought many victories home to Tampa
    Whose ransoms did the Glazer’s coffers fill:
    Did this in LaGarrette seem ambitious?
    When that the fans have cried, Blount hath wept:
    Ambition should be made of sterner stuff:
    Yet Thomas says he was ambitious;
    And Thomas 2.2 is an honourable man.
    You all did see that on Oar
    I thrice presented him a kingly crown,
    Which he did thrice refuse: was this ambition?
    Yet Thomas says he was ambitious;
    And, sure, he is an honourable man.
    I speak not to disprove what Thomas 2.2 spoke,
    But here I am to speak what I do know.

  48. Miguel Grande Says:

    You all did love him once, not without cause:
    What cause withholds you then, to mourn for him?
    O judgment! thou art fled to brutish beasts,
    And men have lost their reason. Bear with me;
    My heart is in the coffin there with LaGarrette,
    And I must pause till it come back to me.


    Bill Shakespeare (Julius Caesar)
    Tisdale Cabernet Sauvignon (California)

  49. BOb Says:

    game over!

  50. IMiss#40 Says:

    Anyone who is debating which back should get the job this early needs to step back and realize that they haven’t even played a practice snap with pads. Let’s them get to camp, practice hard, and produce in the pre-season and then we can debate who should start. Right now I am in the camp that all things being equal you have to earn reps, and Blount has produced in the NFL, Martin is purely “potential” at this point…and I wanted to draft him since his bowl performance.

    – Speaking of Pads, Kh should put his Manpon in because he sounds b*tchier than my old lady at that special time.

  51. BigMacAttack Says:

    Wow, I feel like I just got a Jim Rome enema.