“We Know What The Issue Is, What The Problem Is.”

May 29th, 2016
Running backs coach Tim Spencer talks Doug Martin

Running backs coach Tim Spencer talks Doug Martin

Yes, Doug Martin is an NFL star. Yes, he coughed up the rock twice in Week 16, leading to two turnovers in a five-point home loss to the lowly Bears.

Is Lovie Smith still employed if Martin holds the damn football? That’s a question for the history books. Chicago scored on both possessions immediately following the fumbles.

When queried about Martin’s fumbling woes earlier this month, Bucs running backs coach Tim Spencer admitted Martin has a problem that is being addressed.

“We have talked about it. And we’ve studied it. So we know what the issue is, what the problem is. We just gotta work on them,” Spencer said. “I’m not going to dwell on it. We do work on it consistently. He’s well aware of [the fumbles]. Trust me.”

It’s May, and Martin hardly has a career full of fumbling issues. Nobody coached up the art of ball security better than Greg Schiano, so Martin got an excellent foundation out of the gate. But it sure was interesting to hear Spencer acknowledge there’s a “problem.”

Joe, however, is not concerned.

20 Responses to ““We Know What The Issue Is, What The Problem Is.””

  1. Jolly Bucs Fan Says:

    Even if he fumbles more than the average back, his production will net us multiple wins.

  2. BigPoppaBuc Says:

    Most of his fumbles were classic extra yardage fumbles. Easy fix imo.

  3. Pickgrin Says:

    6 fumbles in 4 years is hardly a “problem”. Yes – 4 of those 6 were last year – but consider Martin had 321 touches and 4 fumbles – most or all of which occurred fighting for YAC yards which DM was best in the NFL at. I will take that ratio along with the productivity. AP had more fumbles BTW – don’t hear anybody talking about his fumbles as a big “problem”.

  4. Buccfan37 Says:

    Ugh for reminding me of da Bear loss, one I was sure beforehand would land in the Bucs win column. Martin should have invested in finger extension surgery offseason to wrap that ball up.

  5. SB with Jameis Says:

    87……..I would take your bet but that would mean that I am rooting Against the Dougernaught and I can’t find it in myself to do that.

  6. Stanglassman Says:

    The best and possibly only great coaching point Schaino had was having the guys handling the football to keep it high and tight.

  7. mdsbuc Says:

    “Chicago scored on both possessions immediately following the fumbles.”

    There’s the real problem; a defense that couldn’t stop any offense, couldn’t force a turnover, or produce a score of their own. I’m optimistic about what Mike Smith is going to do with the “D” this year.

  8. DB55 Says:

    4 of those 6 were last year – but consider Martin had 321 touches and 4 fumbles – most or all of which occurred fighting for YAC yards which DM was best in the NFL at. I will take that ratio along with the productivity.

    Yet another reason why Lovie is coaching the fighting illioni. I think everyone would agree w pickgrin except for coach my scheme. It didn’t go unnoticed that after every fumble Martin got bench for a series or two. Imagine how many yards he would have run for without the benchings or the half of penalties we got during his huge runs.

  9. LakeLandBuc Says:

    We need that 3rd back to get some touches, Mike James or Peyton Barber in my opinion. We can’t overwork 2 backs, like we did last season.

  10. Buc1987 Says:

    SB…well you’re not exactly rooting against the Hamster. He could fall short and still have a very good season. I just think he’s about to explode, no matter Sims taking carries away or not.

  11. James Walker Says:

    Running backs fumble. All we can do it hope that it happens at a time and part of the field where it does not affect the outcome of the game.

  12. Pawel Says:

    DB coaches teach to strip the ball, RB coaches teach to grip the ball. Moral of the story is, it’s part of the game! Move on.

  13. godzilla13 Says:

    “I’m not going to dwell on it” is not the right approach. Great teams don’t turn the ball over. Bill Walsh used to beat his players up if they fumbled the ball. He would tell his players “don”t be that guy”. Pressure on players by constant reminders and making turnovers unacceptable is what make great teams great. The same should be said about penalties. Mike Smith is supposed to be the “teach all” when it comes to preventing penalties. I wonder what he is putting in place to change the culture at One Buc Place?

  14. 98bucsfan Says:

    I’ll give schiano some credit on that one. He did an excellent job on coaching the “high and tight” method. And with that Martin only had one fumble his rookie year (which should’ve been a touchdown, still PO’d about that one). But I don’t think it’s a big issue considering how well he’s managed holding onto it. Peterson, gurley, lacy. They all fumble and probably more than Martin has. I’m not too concerned about this.

  15. DaRealistBucFan Says:

    Everybody fumbles here and there. I don’t see it being a major concern go forward

  16. DemBoyzFromDaBay727 Says:

    Hopefully Peyton Barber and Storm Johnson get a few touches. I was a Storm fan in college. He’s a very shifty back who can break one to the house at any time with his speed. Didn’t have the greatest start to his career with the jags, but I think he’s got alot of potential. And I’m sure the bucs see the same thing, that’s why they signed him.

    I would like to see Barber in short yardage situations and on the goaline. He’s a bruiser back it looks like. We haven’t had one of those in a long time.

  17. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Fumbling issues in underwear football? No such thing.

  18. BuccaneerBonzai Says:


    “Storm Johnson” is such a cool name, lol.

  19. Bucskickass Says:

    How can you even write an article like this! Have you ever heard the saying “looking a gift horse in the mouth”. Doug Martin rocks

  20. drdneast Says:

    Just because Martin fumbles the ball doesn’t mean the defense shouldn’t produce three and out.
    The problem wasn’t so Martin’s fumbles but the defenses inability to stop the opposition from scoring.