Martin was named to the Associated Press All-Pro team, Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times reports. The fourth-year pro capped off an outstanding 1,402-yard campaign by joining James Wilder as the only Bucs running backs to ever receive All-Pro honors. Following a remarkable 1,454-yard rookie season, Martin suffered through two lackluster and injury-plagued campaigns before enjoying a resurgent 2015. The soon-to-be 27-year-old will enter offseason contract negotiations with the Bucs sporting a considerable degree of leverage.
Martin has stated he would "love" to re-sign with the Bucs this offseason, Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times reports. So much for playing his cards close to the vest ahead of contract negotiations. Martin and the Bucs have expressed a mutual desire to keep the fourth-year tailback in red and pewter in 2016 and beyond, following his second-best season as a pro."I would love to come back here," Martin said. "It's a young team and there were a lot of positive things that happened this year. I would love to be around when we blossom. The 26-year-old's 1,402 yards were second in the NFL, and his 4.9 yards per carry and season-long 84-yard run were both career bests. Given the public statements from both the team and Martin regarding his future, it's conceivable he may be willing to give the Bucs a slight discount in order re-sign with the team that drafted him. However, if he tests the free agent market come March, Martin figures to attract strong interest from multiple teams.
Martin gained 48 yards on 15 carries and also secured all seven of his targets for 60 yards in Sunday's 38-10 loss to the Panthers. The fourth-year tailback badly scuffled on the ground, gaining 20 yards on his game-long tote and otherwise grinding out 28 yards on his other 14 carries. However, he did his best Charles Sims impersonation (although ironically, he still fell short of his teammate's reception total on the day), securing a season-high seven receptions for a 2015 high-water mark in receiving yardage (60). Martin finished the season with 1,402 yards-- his best haul on the ground since his stellar 2012 rookie season when he amassed 1,454--and the unrestricted free agent's retention will undoubtedly be a priority of the Bucs' front office heading into the offseason. Despite a lackluster final two weeks where he was only able to gain 97 yards on 32 carries (3.0 yards per carry), the 26-year-old ran decisively throughout the season, putting to rest any doubts as to whether his rookie campaign had been an anomaly.
Martin and the Buccaneers are talking about a contract extension before the running back hits the free agent market, the Tampa Tribune reports. "We've already talked a little bit," Tampa Bay general manager Jason Licht said. "We will definitely be talking (more). We'd love to have Doug back." Martin was coming off two seasons marred by injury, when Tampa Bay opted not to pick up his fifth-year option back in May. Now, the fourth-year running back, who trails only Minnesota's Adrien Peterson in rushing yards, has all the leverage. The Bucs are reported to be seeking a two-year deal, but Martin will command a longer-term commitment in the market.
Martin leads all running backs with five lost fumbles in 2015, Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times reports. The fourth-year running back is otherwise enjoying an outstanding campaign, and retains an outside chance of catching Adrian Peterson for the NFL rushing crown. However, all five of his fumbles, a career-high figure, have led to points for the opposition (four touchdowns and one field goal). The issue was an unexpected one for Martin coming into the season, who despite his considerable struggles the last two campaigns, had still only coughed up the ball twice over 580 career carries. Even with his difficulties in holding on to the football, Martin can set a new career high in rushing yards with at 101 on Sunday versus the Panthers, and would shatter Tampa's franchise record of 1,544 if he could explode for at least 191.
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