Dishing On Doug Martin’s Future

May 19th, 2017


Consider Mike Florio skeptical of Doug Martin’s future with the Bucs.

Yesterday, in perhaps his most direct comment this offseason on Martin’s status, winning Bucs coach Dirk Koetter dropped the phrase “yet to be determined” on ESPN.

That comment sparked more Martin chatter on national TV this morning, specifically from Florio, the creator, curator and overall guru of “Pro Football Talk.” During his weekday morning show, “PFT Live,” seen on NBC Sports Network, Florio wasn’t rushing to stamp Martin’s name on the 2017 roster.

Florio is dubious of Martin’s Bucs future for two reasons. Martin’s current contract just might doom his Tampa days, and Martin’s three-game suspension to start the regular season means he better hope the Bucs’ rushing attack struggles.

“Actually, that PED suspension helps the Buccaneers because it invalidates, it voids the guaranteed money for this year,” Florio said. “They can walk away from him. They are due to pay him north of $5.7 million this year. As running backs go, that’s a lot. And if you have guys who can get the job done for a lot less money, you say ‘See you later, Doug Martin.’

“So even though he has been drawing plenty of praise for his work in the offseason program – as he should be. The guy knows his career is on the line. And the guy has to understand that even if the Buccaneers decide not to keep him, he needs to have that positive buzz out there so somebody else will give him a job.

“But the Buccaneers may very well decide when it is time for him to return from that suspension after the third Sunday of the regular season, they may say, ‘Doug, thanks for everything. But, we’re moving on with the guys that we have.’ This gives them – they have three regular season games to figure out whether the guys they have can be entrusted with the job of getting it done after Martin is cleared to return.”

Obvious point by Florio that’s been discussed on the Ira Kaufman Podcast: If (pick your favorite) Jacquizz Rodgers or Peyton Barber or Jeremy McNichols goes savage on NFL defenses in the first three games, Martin loses every ounce of leverage he may have. Why bring back a massive, expensive question mark if the running game is humming? Why fix something that isn’t broken if the running game is plowing through defenses in September?

For Martin’s sake, he better cross his fingers the Bucs struggle terribly with the run game while he serves his NFL penalty for flunking a whiz quiz.

58 Responses to “Dishing On Doug Martin’s Future”

  1. Cobraboy Says:

    This gets old.

  2. carrythatmofostick Says:

    c u later doug

  3. The Buc Realist Says:

    Obvious point by Florio that’s been discussed on the Ira Kaufman Podcast: that The Buc Realist has been saying all along!!!!!!


    do you see now!!!!! The Bucs have options!!!! And drug martin has no leverage in this matter at all!!!!!!

    Go Truth. Justice and The American Way!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Go Bucs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. JTHV Says:

    TGIF and all of these speculative shows are gone for 48 hours … it’s all hot air!

    Nobody knows anything, including the Bucs.

    “It’s not YOUR “bad luck” because it’s raining and you have to venture outside, it’s the current conditions of the atmosphere coming together to produce the rain. In other words, reality has happened, not your bad luck, so stfu.” – Me

  5. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    I think doug is best of the lot of rbs on the bucs, i hope licht knows something about mcnichols that 31 other teams missed on but….licht also thought he knew more grabbing aguayo and a LSU backer with a bum wheel

  6. FLBoyInDallas Says:

    Martin stole $7 million from the Bucs last year. Quit on his team. Stabbed them in the back when they needed him most. If he’s not twice as good as could be reasonably expected this year in training camp and preseason, they should wait until the last minute and then cut his ass without remorse. Either that or he should play for free since he stole an entire season’s worth of pay and gave them jack sh-t in return.

  7. Defense Rules Says:

    Thank you Cobraboy, I agree. Pure speculation that just keeps droning on & on. Actually surprised that no one from ESPN has speculated yet that the Russians are behind the whole Doug Martin affair.

  8. ImJustHereForJameisNews Says:

    I think they end up restructuring his contract and he stays. The bucs Snapchat had him taking official team photographs and videos w the stars like gmac, Kwon, Mike and OJ. Could be a reach, but I think if they wanted to cut ties w him they would’ve been did that. Why let him hang around and be a “distraction”?

  9. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    I don’t wanna sound against DM but to say he is the best RB we have when folks break down his shortcomings over the last few years is pushin it in my opinion Dusthty. He’s the most experienced but the best that’s up for debate to me. This conversation might be alot different were it not for the 3 games he has to miss. If he were available week 1 then we could guage his performance. But to miss 3 games an have others who I believe are going to do well,well that kinda changes things. “Yet to be determined” speaks volumes. That means if someone shines while he’s out that could be it for him.

  10. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    After “yet to be determined” I really don’t know what’s so hard to understand. Pete said week or so ago if McNichols balls DM gone. After listening to coach Spencer mention Quizz and Barber yesterday I’ll extend that notion to if either of them ball during those 3 games DM gone folks.

  11. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    And said that line infront of a national audience. C’mon man.

  12. Danati74 Says:

    Doug can succeed, when we have only seen a bit from the others. What happens when one or two of them go down? Nah, I’m gonna keep a semi proven Doug on my team. At least the north of $7M is dropped down to $5M.

  13. BucDaddy82 Says:

    I would love to see Doug succeed as a BUC. Not sure about Joe.

  14. Gencoimports Says:

    The only way I see Martin possibly getting cut while staying clean at the same time is if McNichols completely goes off in games 1-3 and at the same time the other backs stay healthy.

    If Martin can’t stay clean, then he should be cut and that’s why TPTB are being non-committal. He needs to prove he can stay clean.

  15. Picaroon45 Says:

    Games Week 1-3 are against teams that had poor rush defenses in 2016. The Vikings ranked #20 with the Bears at #27 and the Dolphins at #30. Weeks 4 & 5, Giants and Patroits on 4 days rest, tied for #3. If the Bucs want to dump Martin, they’d better wait for Week 6.

  16. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    From this moment on I’m focusing my mind on the guys that will actually be playing the first three weeks. If someone else comes in and ball after that then fine. I ain’t distributing anymore mental energy on this one.

  17. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    Giants may fall back a little they let one of they’re bigguns end up in Indy.

  18. Pickgrin Says:

    Reposted from earlier thread. Think I will just save this to make it easier to respond the next 78 times a Joe writes an article over the next 4 months about DMs incredibly low chances of being on the Bucs roster in 2017…

    Pickgrin Says:
    May 19th, 2017 at 11:10 am
    IMO – Better than 50/50 Martin will be on the team in 2017. More like 70/30.

    The coaches and GM aren’t lying. They really don’t know how this DM situation is going to go down. Everyone hopes Doug does what he is supposed to and looks good in camp and preseaon and stays healthy.

    If all those things which could be reasonably expected occur – AND DM is willing to re-do his deal to one that is more favorable to the team financially and fully protects against “relapse” – then I think the chances of Doug Martin playing for the Bucs in 2017 goes way up above 90%.

    Time will tell.

    The wildcard is Jeremy McNichols. If the kid looks really really good – grabs the starting job and plays well in the 1st 3 games – then Martin’s future with the Bucs becomes much more uncertain.

  19. SB Says:

    Just a thought……….How many other teams have TWO Harvard Grads on the roster.

  20. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Once again, I am throwing a wild card into the mix. Bucs usually keep 4 running backs going into a season, but with Martin suspended, they can keep an extra one for the first three games. So:

    • Doug Martin

    • Jacquizz Rodgers: They liked him enough to resign him

    • Jeremy McNicholes: They obviously like him, so they won’t risk putting him on waivers for the Practice Squad.

    So, to start the season there are two spots open

    • Charles Sims: I think it is likely they keep him. Although some people don’t want him here, the Bucs clearly like him in the passing game.

    That leaves one spot.
    • Peyton Barber: Would seem to be the obvious choice, but maybe not. There is another factor no once in the media or fandom is considering.

    • Quayvon Hicks: Last year, Dirk Koetter talked about wanting a traditional short yardage fullback. That is exactly what the Bucs have in Hicks. Now, if they did not have an extra spot because of the suspension, I think he would go right to the practice squad.

    However, Martin’s suspension will give them a chance to put him to the test.

    So, to sum it up, I think Barber is the odd man out now.

  21. Fsuking Says:

    We will pay him the 5.7 million and restructure if he is anything short of a Pro Bowler. It’s basically another contract year. We all know the best Doug Martin comes out whenever $ is on the line.

  22. Tnew Says:

    Why keep him? When the inevitable injury happens he will be available as capable depth. When was the last season the Bucs had that an rb didn’t go down for significant time?

  23. Tampa Tony Says:

    Florio had some telling comments about #3 in the write up for the Bucs signing Fitz

    Fitzpatrick becomes the primary backup to Jameis Winston, and possibly a mentor to the third-year player as he tries to become a full-blown franchise quarterback.-Florio

    Back to the topic it’s gonna be awesome to hear the Joes back track when Martin is still on the team

  24. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Fitz won’t be a mentor to Jameis. Jameis doesn’t need one. He is a dominant personality. It would take a superstar to mentor him, and even then, I doubt it will happen.

  25. LakeLandBuc Says:

    It don’t matter who carry the rock, if we don’t have any blocking.

  26. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    I’m telling you Joe, Martins status on this team is contingent upon his performance in preseason.

    Rb Coach Timothy Spencer was quoted saying that Doug’s impending suspension hasn’t changed a thing and that every Rb currently on the roster is going to get their shot to play.

    Like Koetter said, it’s yet to be determined, meaning that if he shines in preseason like he did in 2015, he’ll be in our plans moving forward. Bet on it.

  27. mike Says:

    Joe is Mike Florio your idol?
    Agree with Cobra boy
    This gets old

  28. Mr V Says:

    If the run game struggle in their 1st 3 games, you may be looking at 1-2 followed by the Giants and Pats back to back. This area would be singing to Dougie

    the Welcome Back Carter theme. U know, Welcome back, welcome back

  29. StPeteBucsfan Says:


    Just a thought……….How many other teams have TWO Harvard Grads on the roster.

    I suspect the same number of teams that can claim two Boise grads on their roster. 🙂

  30. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    Blake how many touches do you foresee DM having in the pre season when he won’t be available 1 and this team has to get guys that will be playing week one ready for the season 2.

  31. StPeteBucsfan Says:

    Here’s a question for all. I’m assuming the suspension is just for the first three games of the regular season.

    That is to say they are allowed to let practice and play in the pre-season then he has to leave the facility for three weeks with no contact.

    That being the case the pre season reps could get very interesting. Presumably they feel like they know Doug and will only have to check out if he’s off drugs.

    But they surely will want to look at the new rookie as well as see if Sims is healthy…then there’s the progress report on Barber as well as the need to get Quizz ready for the season.

    Seeing who gets the reps in the preseason should be very interesting.

  32. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    Very interesting.

  33. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    In listening to Chris Harris jr on nfl network. 5’10 198lbs. VH3 5’10 204lbs. Harris had played 7 seasons,pro bowler the last three. I say this why, because some you be raggin on my CB unfairly. Give him a minute to mature man. Sorry Joe.

  34. AceofAerospace Says:

    Drug Martin is either a druggie, a cheater, a liar or all of the above. He is most assuredly, unreliable. Goodbye Drug Martin. Nice knowing you.

  35. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    I’d say they will give Doug Martin at least one preseason game to prove himself.

  36. GhostofTedford Says:

    We have seen the efforts to get Winston much needed weapons. How about getting Martin some much needed weapons?

    Our O-line is suspect. Currently you have three unsigned Free agents that could help.

    1) Guard Tre Jackson former team the Superbowl champs. Former FSU.

    2) Center Nick Mangold. All pro – solid Veteran. Look what Mankins did for us.

    3) Tackle King Dunlap 6’9 330 pounds.

    All for the pickings Licht. Must be some Glazer loot still around to pick up one of these guys at least.

  37. Vico Says:

    This is by far the worst part of the offseason. We could have more Kay-Adams-is-a-new-bucs-fan articles though…

  38. First Down Tampa Bay Says:

    I will be shocked and quite frankly disappointed if Doug isn’t our starter come week 6.

  39. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    I hope for his sake he looks like the 2015 version of him self Blake.

  40. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    Not trying to be a-hole First Down, but do you say that because you’re a huge DM fan??? Because I think if someone other than DM is getting the job done many here won’t be crying over the fact that it is by someone other than DM.

  41. First Down Tampa Bay Says:


    While I’m not the biggest DM fan, I do think his performance just two seasons ago is definitely worthy of a second chance. I mean, I like Quizz and all, but I just don’t think he is our answer. I know Doug is pretty much universally hated ’round these parts, but I would still rather see him be our starter come week five.

  42. BucTrooper Says:

    So here’s the scenario: the running game is terrible…. the Bucs then stake the success of their season on a drug addict who hopefully is playing with emotion.

    The best case, 3 unproven, uncertain, lower-tier running backs EXCEL (which happens so often) and render the Drug Martin expendable.

    Anything other than unquestionable domination by the running game is a direct reflection on Licht. Just like Lovie making a spectacle of standing by his POS kicker after the Texans game…. you can stand by your kicker; now the onus is on you.

  43. BringBucsBack Says:

    If they were to foolishly cut Doug, would it be a forgone conclusion that the Belicheats sign him at 2.5 mil a year, just in time to gain valuable intel for the week 5 match-up, prior to rushing for 6000 yards & 55 TD’s over the next 5 years?

  44. Rod Munch Says:

    Joe when Martin is still on the team in November we will still be getting these daily articles saying how he’s going to be cut any moment now? If the team didn’t want Martin why wouldn’t they cut him at his point – why would they keep him around and risk him dropping a weight on his foot? Serious question – does the team have an insurance policy on Martin that covers him if he got injured and missed the season? If so then I get more why he’d still be here even if they apparently don’t want him. But if the team doesn’t have that then why wouldn’t he have gotten cut already – why would they risk him getting injured and being liable for the $7-mil this year – or worse if it’s like an ACL that drags into next season.

  45. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    I respect that First Down.

  46. Fred E. Bucs Says:

    Florio knows about much as Joe does I’d expect, who knows about us much as a lot of people, which is nothing. Not a slam. Just more speculation, which is fine…but the fact is, Koetter isn’t going to say because he’s not sure. And again, when you go to length by paying millions more to hire an extra kicker (in case first healthy one is a dug again) and backup QB…because you want to contend now…you DON’T cut a RB on your roster who takes up less than $6 million but who gives you extra firepower, especially given you ave the cap space. This not time to save money at RB, especially for now who has performed befoer and is due. Besides that, Floria is a mlllion miles away…and just maybe..that far off too.

  47. Cobraboy Says:

    The Joe’s runs an excellent site and have a great ability to make something interesting out of nothing. Seriously, kudos, keeps eyeballs on the site and that’s the whole point. Without eyeballs, there is no JBF.

    That said, in today’s 24/7/365 NFL there are often periods when not much is happening. Like now. So the entire NFL “industry” that employs a large number of media specialists (I won’t call them journalists) have to pretty much start making stuff up to fill space and air.

    That’s what get’s old: creating “news”—in this case Doug Martin—that doesn’t exist, and posters who pile on the news that doesn’t exist.

    Folks praise Licht and Koetter because they don’t bullPelosi anyone. They shoot square. But when they say “we have time on our side” folks van’t just leave it alone, they have to do a Great Kreskin imitation and parse. Every. Single. Word.


    It gets old and predictible.

    Love your site, Joes, a huge fan here. But C’Mon…

  48. Brett Says:

    If martin looks like he did two years ago, I hope they find a way to keep him. I’m sure they will try to reduce his salary. But it aint my money. I just want the Bucs to win. A healthy, focused Martin (if that exists) would help that.

  49. Buc89 Says:

    Those of you bored about a doug martin article, what would you prefer joe to write about? Would you rather have only 1 article a day?

    Sometimes you don’t get to have your cake and eat it too.

  50. Rod Munch Says:

    I don’t mind having the same news but mix it up a little, instead of the nonsense that the Bucs can’t possibly have a running back that will miss 3 games on the roster, how about saying hum, the Steelers had a RB last year that missed 3 games to open the season, how did they do? The issue is just repeating the same thing over and over – we get Joe, you hate Doug Martin because you think he stinks. How about showing proof of all the plays last year where Martin was awful – versus the plays were he’s getting hit in the backfield because the offensive linemen are getting blown-up and Dirk is super predictable and just calling the same plays over and over and over. Just anything, even if Joe presents it as fake news just say not everyone wants to see Martin chained to a boat and then ran full speed into the Skyway Bridge to reenact the collapse of the bridge in 1980.

  51. Rod Munch Says:

    Oh wow, I just realized most of you all probably don’t even know what I was talking about with the Skyway Bridge disaster comment since most of you all are a bunch of yankees from up north. Here you go, watch this so you know some TB history and that way you can expand your local reference dialog.

  52. me so smart Says:

    @The Buc Realist Says
    “do you see now!!!!!”

    wrong punctuation….try to mix in a #questionmark from time to fake passion. !!!! doesn’t = passion.

  53. Trubucfan22 Says:

    As you said joe, this topic has been discussed thoroughly by you, Ira, gil, and the millions of bucs fans around the globe. Florio brings no new insight. Why is someone elses ramblings worth an article on your site? This is a pretty successful site, no need to talk about other peoples sites to beat the same dead horse with the same stinking stick.

  54. Rod Munch Says:

    I have a question actually – I’ve asked before but never seen a clear answer. Did Martin lose his guaranteed contract forever, or is it timed to something, like the team can get out of the guarantee for a year but his contract returns to being guaranteed after that? To me it makes zero sense to cut Martin if you can get out of the contract at anytime without a penalty – but if Florio is saying that’s not the case, then I finally get Joe’s opinion on the matter, not that Joe has never explained it that way if it’s the case.

  55. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    Our running game will be humming all season. Baring injuries, our WR and TE will allow our rbs to have so much more freedom. No more stacking the box and double or triple teaming Evans. Every player we line up has talent and is a threat.

    Throw in a healthy Sweezy and watch out boys and girls. I’m expecting McNichols to be our #1 by the end of game 3. He can do it all and most importantly is a great blocker which will allow him to get on the field more often early on.

  56. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    Would rather use that 6mil on an ol guy or another CB or DE when cuts happen. We should be able to add 2 or 3 good players then easily. Need that extra money for guys that will actually perform.

  57. Stpetebucsfan Says:

    It might be a technicality but the Bucs do not have Doug Martin currently on the roster. He’s serving a suspension until the 4th game of the season.

    The do not have to cut him, or deal him, or anything until decision time in week 4.
    Then the Bucs either pay Doug the 5 million plus on his contract…OR…Doug becomes a free agent and the Bucs regain his cap space.

    I do not dislike Doug Martin. The drugs are now part of our society and the NFL.
    I welcome Doug back to the Buc’s personally. It’s just his talent that leaves me meh….Lord C has documeneted this statistically very well.

    AGAIN…not emtionally…just from a football team success…it’s FAR…FAR better for the Bucs if the McNichols kid is the real deal and the Bucs can move on at RB. It’s not only a vast savings over the next few years in salary…Doug is not getting any younger. Even without the drug problem the Bucs would have to be grooming Martin’s successor.

    It would be soooo much better for the Bucs if McNichols renders this a moot point!

  58. Robertg Says:

    Can’t just drop this can ya Joe. Seems like every day you poke that stick at Martin.
    Give it up as we fans are tired of the bashing.