Beware I!

February 18th, 2016
Not everyone wants RB Doug Martin back.

Not everyone wants RB Doug Martin back.

Uh, oh, Bucs fans.

Might want to buckle up for this one.

Joe doesn’t know of many (any?) Bucs fans who don’t want to see everyone’s favorite Muscle Hamster, running back Doug Martin, return to the fold next season.

Martin, in his fourth NFL season in 2015, broke out of a terrible two-year slump and returned to his wonderful rookie season form by having the second-most rushing yards in the league. It was one of the best rushing seasons in Bucs history.

But hold up! A top imaginary cake baker over at PFF, Sam Monson, typing a piece for BSPN, believes Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht has reason to be cautious in re-signing Martin because Martin, per Monson, is a classic boom-or-bust player. He claims Licht easily could be walking around this time next year with egg on his face if he re-ups Martin.

Martin was the league’s leading rusher for much of the 2015 season and finished a close second to Adrian Peterson with 1,402 yards, a league-leading 902 of which came after contact. At his best, Martin is a dynamic runner with the ability to make things happen on his own, breaking 57 tackles on his carries in 2015. The problem is his career has been entirely boom or bust to date. Prior to this season, he had two seasons in which he totaled 956 rushing yards and three touchdowns, forcing just 19 missed tackles on 262 carries. If you could guarantee you would get the 2015 version of Martin, you would be happy shelling out big money, but that is a big if.

That paragraph right there, just above this sentence, is exactly why Joe would not hesitate for one second to slap the franchise tag on Martin. It’s another prove-it contract.

If Martin, as Monson suggests, doesn’t repeat his 2015 form, then Licht just washes his hands and walks away.

50 Responses to “Beware I!”

  1. buc4life1979 Says:

    His fifth year option was declined so he could “prove it” last season. Bottomline is if we don’t pay him so he can prove it again, someone else will, and he will go whereevert hat other team is and join the many other former Buc free agents that went to another team only to continue their previous success. If Licht signs him and he doesn’t pan out as expected, atleast he took the chance to keep him and his potential production here. Given the Bucs history, if Licht lets him walk and he runs wild for another team, while our running game doesn’t keep clicking like it did last year…PUBLIC RELATIONS NIGHTMARE. JUST PAY THE MAN ALREADY!!!

  2. San Francisco Joe Says:


    I think people in general underestimate the message that franchising a player sends. Particularly in the Buccaneer’s case, it tells the player, yes we have the money to resign you, but we don’t want to reward you for the effort that you put in. Sure franchise Martin for 2016, but then you can pretty much forget the possibility of resigning him the next year.

    I also have a problem with saying that Martin is a boom or bust player. Sure, every player you sign long-term is a potential risk, but lets not forget that this entire team was a disaster in 2013 & 2014. Martin didn’t choose to bring in Josh McCown at QB. He didn’t choose to promote Marcus Arroyo as the offensive coordinator. In 2015 you saw what can happen when you have competent players on offense and an experienced offensive coordinator. People who say Martin is a 50/50 player are simply looking at the stat sheet. I can only hope that Jason Licht is not as shortsighted.

  3. Strider ....Sec 147 Says:

    I am confident dougie resigns like 99.9% sure -___- I wanna know when is Jameis getting his indoor training facility!!!! Does he have to win a couple playoff games first?

  4. pick6 Says:

    it’s a prove it contract that costs 75% of what it would cost to lock the guy down for 2 years. we have about 3 years of ridiculous cap room before we have to give some good players second contracts. it just doesn’t make sense to me not to stretch the commitment a little more. front load it if you are worried about future cap hell, but right now we can sign doug and a handful of role players and still have room for 3 or 4 superstar contracts over the next 2 or 3 years. we won’t sign a bunch of superstars, my point is how hard it is to spend the cap room we do have in 2016 and 2017

  5. destro44 Says:

    You people realize ifwe use the franchise tag he stays in Tampa right. The issue here is he is 27 so 3 year deal isthe only good option for us. Remeber 30 gas been the end of many good running backs. So if Martin won’t take a 3 year deal you use the tag. By year 3 Jameis should be able to carry the offense with a rookie rb.

  6. The Buc Realist Says:

    I am very surprised that no one is talking about an incentive based contract!!! If DM22 keeps having seasons like last year he will hit the 8+ million club that he wants to be in!! and if he does not then the Bucs are only on the hook for 4.5million.

    Its as simple as that ( as the worst bucs coach in recent history would say!!)

  7. Ocala Says:

    Joe you have had two ideas I love this offseason:

    Franchise Doug Martin and attempt to trade a low draft choice to Buffalo for Mario Williams whom has two years left on his contract.

    In both cases the Bucs can take the long term contract risk out of the equation

    Regarding the draft a guy on here called”HireJimbo” was calling me out on why I am so high on Sheldon Rankins out of Lousiville. He said everyone has him as a second round talent at best and that I must be a Louisville fan.

    However, PFF, Scouts Inc with ESPN and all have Sheldon Rankins as top 10 on their draft boards.
    I guess they all must be Louisville fans too.

  8. biff barker Says:

    At age 27, and never having back to back seasons, there is no chance Martin signs a two year deal.

    Licht is really in a box here. No sense being the fall guy by throwing big money after a contract year. I’m warming up to tagging him.

  9. Bucsfanman Says:

    Whatever formula they use, I’d like to see #22 in pewter next season. Dougie was a major cog in that offense and will bring consistency in the line-up. The money issues will play out accordingly.

  10. OneBuc55 Says:

    Honestly, 7 mill a year should be our max with Martin…Running backs take a beating; not the best investment…I’d say it’s time for Charles Sims to jump of the porch

  11. Joe Says:

    I think people in general underestimate the message that franchising a player sends. Particularly in the Buccaneer’s case, it tells the player, yes we have the money to resign you, but we don’t want to reward you for the effort that you put in.

    You mean $11 million isn’t a reward enough?

  12. Joe Says:

    The issue here is he is 27 so 3 year deal isthe only good option for us.

    Wrote it before and will write again: Will be very, very, very, very, very surprised (maybe shocked?) if Doug Martin is on the Bucs roster in 2018.

  13. Joe Says:

    it just doesn’t make sense to me not to stretch the commitment a little more.

    Martin will be 29 after the 2017 season.

    Running backs who approach 30 not named Adrian Peterson scare the wits out of general managers (and some owners) unless they are under a very team-friendly contract.

  14. Joe Says:

    San Francisco Joe:

    Jason Licht is not short-sighted. That’s why he didn’t trigger the fifth-year option. That’s why he wanted Martin to play under a “prove-it” year. That’s why Martin is yet unsigned.

    And that’s why he should seriously consider tagging him.

  15. Buc_The_World Says:

    If we don’t resign him he is going to the patriots and win a Superbowl and once again we will be sitting at home watch watching another player we didn’t want to leave winning with a different team.

  16. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    I said it all through last season…FRANCHISE HIM.

    @San Francisco Joe

    You miss the fact that Martin said in an interview last month that he would be okay with being franchised.

    You also forget that Doug Martin has only had 50% success…which makes him a huge risk. If he has really turned a corner, he needs to prove it again. If they franchise him and he excels again, then that will put him at a 60% success rate (year-wise). Then it might be more worth signing him.

    And the franchise tag won’t matter if the decide by the 8th game to do a deal…after he has come into the year in shape again and is running well again.

    As the offensive line develops, just about any RB will find success back there.

    Franchise Doug.

  17. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Sigh Martin to a two year guaranteed deal with a third year team option…..good guaranteed money with plenty of incentives…..
    Don’t franchise him…..too much…..then we are in the same situation if he performs next year.

  18. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Also, consider this…why didn’t he get in shape the year before so the Bucs would take up his option? Had he done that, his condition may have been good enough to avoid injury.

    No. He waited until his contract year…and that sends out warning signs. I like him…a lot…but 50-50 is hard to ignore.

  19. BuccaneerBonzai Says:


    Is it possible to do a 3rd year option AND a 4th year option?

  20. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Buc_The_World Says
    “If we don’t resign him he is going to the patriots…”

    I swear…some of the fans just don’t get it. There is ZERO chance Doug Martin is getting away.

    If he doesn’t sign a deal, the Bucs can franchise him. Twice.

    Fans need to stop panicking.

  21. Pickgrin Says:

    Starting to sound like a broken record up in here.

    Why franchise tag Martin for 1 year when you can lock up the OPTION of his services for 4 years at the exact same guaranteed $ amount???

    4 years – $25M – $12M guaranteed ($5M 2016 salary + $2M of 2017 salary + $5M signing bonus).

    Doug gets his $10M this year and the Bucs get the option of having his services through 2019 for a fair price if he maintains his excellent play. If Martin does not play up to his contract status, the Bucs can cut him after 2017 with no penalty for almost the same price as franchising him for ONE year costs.

    Which makes more sense? – DUH…..

  22. Kevin Says:

    I agree 100%…. tag him and see what happens. It better over paying him by 4 million for 1 year than overpay him 16 to 20 mil over 4 years. Prove it if he doesnt have another similar tear than you know what his long term value is. I see martin in the justin forsett category more than the A.P CATEGORY

  23. William Walls Says:

    Martin’s down seasons were under Mike Sullivan and Marcus Arroyo. Mystery solved. Now, pay the man.

  24. Erik with Clean Athletics Says:

    Franchise tag seems like the wisest move.

    Letting him walk would be the DUMBEST move.

    We need to keep all of our stars & sign/draft more.

    As far as we KNOW, there is not one single RB in the country who could fully replace what Doug brings to the offense.

  25. SOEbuc Says:

    If we could accomplish the dream thing and put together a top tier O-line, then we would be doing soo much for Jameis and that would mean there is no reason to not re-sign Doug

  26. Buccfan37 Says:

    Doug is as snug as a bug in the Bucs rug.

  27. Buc1987 Says:

    San Francisco Joe… 11 to 12 million for ONE season is nothing to sneeze at.

  28. Tom S. Says:

    Joe proposes that the Bucs give a RB 11 million for one year, that the previous coaching staff had so little use for that they spent a 3rd round pick on his replacement in Sims and declined his 5th year option for less than half. A player who has had 2 good years and two eminently replaceable years.

    In 2015 Martin averaged 4.9 ypc, which is great. Charles Sims averaged…4.9 ypc, hmmm. Let’s look at 2014, Martin averaged 3.7 ypc, Sims avg 2.8 but Bobby Rainey averaged 4.3, put their caries together and average them out and oh look you get 3.68 ypc….the same average Martin put up.

    So Joe proposes that the Bucs spend 11 million for one year on a running back who has proven he can average exactly the same amount of yards per carry as his replacements the past two years.

    Yup, sounds right. GM Joe strikes again.

  29. Tnew Says:

    Honestly, sign the guy to a team friendly deal, no more than 3 years of guaranteed time, franchise him, or let someone else pay him. If a 5 year 40 million guaranteed money contract is out there let him sign it.

    For everybody moaning about the 11 mil. Two things, the Bucs are in great shape with the cap and its not Tampa’s money. Its the Glazers. If they want to spend it, go for it. But signing a long term deal with a guy that is kind of injury prone, a guy that we had to decline the 5th year so he would come into camp in shape, well, I’m not so sure thats the smart option. The pats won’t sign that deal, I assure you. Everyone is talking like he will accept a 2 year deal (which he most likely would not) at 8 mil per. If you are him, take the 11 and change then hope you have another great year.

    Heres the rub Bucs fans, as Jameis progresses, Martin’s importance diminishes. My take is spend the money on a d lineman and spend a 4th on a back like Jonathan Williams of Arkansas. He broke his foot in the Spring but until then he was the teams #1 back, plus he didn’t take the SEC pounding for a year

  30. Bucsfanman Says:

    I must be the only NON-accountant to post here! It seems everyone else has a firm grasp of the financial inner workings of the Bucs and the NFL!

  31. Trubucfan22 Says:

    Doug doesn’t have the miles that most RBs have at his age. The years are irrelevant if you front load the guaranteed money in the first 2 years. Sign to 4 years and ci.ut him after 2, if he shows to be slowing down. NFL contracts are easy. The guaranteed money is the only thing that can hurt a team. Look at jackson’s contract. He is supposed to make 11 mil this year. But if we cut him we lose no money and just a small Cap hit. Do the same with Doug. This isn’t rocket science. The Bucs have done a ton of low guaranteed contracts. Continue that trend and sign Martin for 4 years.

  32. Trubucfan22 Says:

    Pickgrin has the right idea. We can put him under contract for 4 years, for the same cost as the franchise tag. Why wouldn’t we do that? The last 2 years are non vested, so we can cut bait after 2 years and only pay him 12 mil.

  33. @FamousKoetterBroy34 Says:


  34. Tnew Says:

    Why would he resign without testing free agency for 12 million guaranteed? The NFLPA might fire the agent on the spot and bar him from representing another client. If the Bucs sign him for that I will officially think Jason Licht is a witch, or voodoo priest.

    If I’m the agent, I’m going to test FA unless a minimum of a 5 year deal and 25million guaranteed is offered. Then play chicken with the Bucs and let them franchise him for 11 and change.

  35. Mike Johnson Says:

    If our Bucs let martin get away..I’m gonna LMAO!! And say, Why its the..Buccaneer way!!

  36. scott fitzgerald Says:

    With winston they have to respect the pass unlike previous QBS

  37. Pickgrin Says:

    Tnew – you (and Doug’s Agent) are dreaming if you think any team is going to guarantee Doug Martin $25M on a long term deal considering his history in the league (2 excellent years of running sandwiched around 2 bad years – that’s a 50% success rate if you are bad at math). Factor in that Doug does not have breakaway (take it to the house) speed, is average at pass catching and pass protection and, in reality, is basically a 2 down running back (albeit a very good one WHEN HEALTHY).

    Dummynic was correct when he pegged Martin’s value at $4-$6M per year on a multi year contract.

    My proposal of $25M for 4 years with 1/2 that guaranteed including a $5M signing bonus is a fair deal for both sides. That’s an average of $6.25M per year with a nice chunk ($10M) up front. The Bucs want him back and Martin wants to be back. So unless his agent is hell bent on playing hardball – this is roughly the area that Doug’s new contract will fall in.

    If the agent is intent on holding out for substantially more – then Licht would be wise to let Doug test the market – where he will find out definitively that his value is about $5M per year on a multi year deal and that no team is going to guarantee more than $10-$15M for a running back that has played well only 2 of his 4 years in the league.

  38. feelthepewterpower Says:

    Horrible oline, injuries, stacked box not respecting the QB pre winston…

  39. Rrsrq Says:

    How of was O J Anderson when the Giants won the SB, wasn’t he in his 30s and rejuvenated, I know, I’m showing my age. Sign the man for 4 years, with Sims still on the team, he won’t get overused, hopefully

  40. Tnew Says:

    Pick grin. You aren’t logical if you think he’s going to resign a deal that guarantees 12 mil over 2 seasons. do not even want to argue, but you got personal so..,Just going to ask the question, why would you sign a two year deal for 12 without testing free agency when you can sign a 1 year for 11mil without testing free agency? He is dealing from a position of strength. He was the 2nd leading rusher last year.

    Funny you are using a guy you call as a dummy in the same sentence to argue your point. I heard the Dominik interview and you are right in that he said he was worth in the 5-6 mil range over 5 years…..but he was talking real guaranteed money, not the not likely to earn at the back end. His words were that he would expect to see the contract have an average payout of….

    I’ll use a source.. indicating a “fair market value” based on his performance, age and previous contracts of similar players to be a 4 year deal at just under 28. (Looked this up prior to writing all of this but).

    Tell me again why he would sign a contract with a guaranteed figure of 12 and pass up his only real position of strength in the free agent market?

    He could sign a contract like you say but that wouldn’t happen until after he enters free agency and all 32 teams value him as such. No way it happens before he tests the market.

  41. DavidBigBucFan Says:

    Dougie has not been healthy the last two years. The fact he had very few make them miss runs means he did not trust either his knees ankles or both. If you’ve ever twisted your knee or ankle you should know what it’s like. Near the end of last year you could tell he was back. I was not surprised about this year as I got to see his breakout game in 2012 against the Vikings when it all came together for him. A lot of people who really haven’t seen him run speak down about him not knowing what it takes to be a running back. Even if the Bucs had picked up that 5th year he still would have had the same year but since it was a show and prove year then what more needs to be done? The Bucs need to give him a good contract and he needs to be sensible about it as well. No other fans will be more ecstatic Bucs fans to see Dougernaut/Dougertron/Dougie Fresh/Muscle Hamster stiff arm cornerbacks into the turf and leaving their jock straps flying in his dust.

  42. tnew Says:

    Don’t misconstrue my comments please. I truly hope the Bucs resign Martin, but its not going to be as easy as I initially thought. This is far from a slam dunk decision for either party.

  43. Architek Says:

    Some of you guys are throwing this FRANCHISE HIM tag around loosely. Tell me one RB not named Peterson that is slated to earn $11M???? For one year…

    You just saw two teams in a SB game that neither featured premier rushers.

    I love Doug but I’m not in the business of breaking business value vs fan opinions rules if I were GM.

    I trust Licht and I know he will definitely do what’s best for the team in concert with Koetter and others. Doug is about to see his market in about a month or so and the Bucs will have an opportunity to match or pass. Let Dallas or Houston or Oakland overpay for a book or bust RB.

    Not a team that’s building a contender to compete for years.

  44. Dave Says:

    Four years up his prime, 27 through 31 are coming up. He has low miles because of the two injury years. I take the chance and sign him to a four-year deal, 7 million a year will get it done. No lingering major knee injuries.
    Sign him.

  45. Pickgrin Says:

    It’ll get done – the Bucs will make a fair offer and hopefully Doug (after some additional negotiation of course) will see it as fair – sign and be done with it.

    Then its off to the bank to deposit that $5,000,000 signing bonus check and then back to work.

    We’ll see – it could get interesting. If Doug wants to test the market – its possible he could lose $ by doing so – I hope he understands that side of it as well.

    The Bucs will not let him test the market without getting their best offer on the table before he does so.

    If he refuses that and then other teams do not want to pay as much as the Bucs offer was (definitely possible) – then Dougie may wind up with less than the original best offer and that would be a shame.

    We’ll see what happens in the next few weeks.

  46. Buc1987 Says:

    Tnew…just to clarify I’m in the tag Martin camp. I’m actually the ring leader.

  47. gotbbucs Says:

    What pick grin said.

    I’ll add this, two injury shortened years don’t mean less miles, it means he can be injury prone, and his running style lends to those injuries. I don’t know how he gets up from some of the hits he takes.

  48. bucs4life86 Says:

    Don’t be to sure that dougy resigns,there gonna let him test the market and I wouldn’t be suprised if a team like the Raiders wich are 70 mill over the cap and want a RB to pare with Murray throw gobs of money @ him. Cause it sounds like Licht doesn’t want to break the bank on him because u don’t know which doug your getting each year. I hope we resign him, he’s been the motor to this offense. and u can’t really count 2014 cause that was a disaster from the start with arroyo and that terrible O-line plus MRSA and McCown @ QB no one had a good year!!!

  49. bucs4life86 Says:

    3 yr deal would be perfect. His production will drop mightly after that unless he pulls a AP on us wich I highly doubt.

  50. bucs4life86 Says:

    The only thing that scares me about signing him to a long term deal is that the first thing that goes on a RB when they hit 30 is there break away speed and that was his one flaw last season so imagine how slow he will be then. Scary to think if your the bucs.