Friday, September 26, 2014, 6:33pm
Buccaneers RB Doug Martin (knee, probable) took full practice reps all week and is probable for Week 4. Martin is practicing fully this week (and declared himself ‘100 percent’ healthy) so he looks like a go for a Week 4 matchup with the Steelers. We’re expecting him to get the start after Bobby Rainey’s fumblitis in Week 3. Rainey has otherwise ran well, however, and may see a larger than usual role for a change-of-pace back.
Thursday, September 25, 2014, 6:48pm
Buccaneers RB Doug Martin (knee) took full practice reps again Thursday. Martin is practicing fully this week (and declared himself ‘100 percent’ healthy) so he looks like a go for a Week 4 matchup with the Steelers. We’re expecting him to get the start after Bobby Rainey’s fumblitis in Week 3. Rainey has otherwise ran well, however, and may see a larger than usual role for a change-of-pace back.
Wednesday, September 24, 2014, 7:09pm
Buccaneers RB Doug Martin (knee) practiced fully Wednesday. Martin is practicing fully this week so he looks like a go for a Week 4 matchup with the Steelers. We’re expecting him to get the start after Bobby Rainey’s fumblitis in Week 3. Rainey has otherwise ran well, however, and may see a larger than usual role for a change-of-pace back.
With Martin out, Bobby Rainey should see a big workload in a great matchup. He is still available on the wire in some leagues. Some around the NFL believe Rainey will keep the starting job even after Martin returns.
Bobby Rainey becomes a low-end RB1/high-end RB2 if Martin is out. If Martin is active, Rainey is still startable as a RB2/flex, but the situation is far murkier if Martin is playing tonight.
Buccaneers beat writer Rick Stroud was asked about RB Doug Martin's status for tonight's game against the Falcons: "I think Martin is active but may not start. Probably go with the hot hand on (Bobby Rainey)."
It sounds as if Stroud is speculating, not reporting as fact. Martin (and Rainey) owners should be aware that the situation is murky right now. Expect both backs to get touches, possibly forming a full-blown committee.
Wednesday, September 17, 2014, 6:15pm
Buccaneers RB Doug Martin (knee, questionable) took limited practice reps Wednesday. Martin apparently practiced with the first team ahead of Bobby Rainey, so it looks like he’ll get the start. HC Lovie Smith said that he wants to use two (or three) backs, so Martin’s workload may be somewhat limited this week if Rainey comes in and plays well.
There were no definitive answers from the coaching staff this week.
“We want to play more than one running back, two, maybe three,’’ coach Lovie Smith said. “That’s why we’ve had three (active) every time we could. That’s just making our running back position stronger.’’
Smith’s not dancing around. He’s serious about playing two or three running backs. He’s been saying that since he arrived, but it hasn’t happened the way Smith wants yet.
This doesn't do much to answer the question at hand. Rainey's impressive game may be enough to earn him the start over Martin, who is back at practice. Neither player is a strong start this week given the murkiness of the situation.
Friday, September 12, 2014, 7:30pm
Lions RB Reggie Bush (knee, probable) took full practice reps again Friday and is probable for Week 2. Bush should be good to go for a tough matchup with the Panthers. They were very stingy against the run in 2013 and shut down both Doug Martin and Bobby Rainey in Week 1.
Friday, September 12, 2014, 7:30pm
Buccaneers RB Doug Martin (knee, questionable) took limited practice reps again Friday and is questionable for Week 2. Martin should be able to play through the knee injury, but he’s a shaky start given the Bucs inability to run the ball against the Panthers.
Thursday, September 11, 2014, 6:24pm
Wednesday, September 10, 2014, 7:02pm
Bucs coach Lovie Smith has called Doug Martin his bell cow back.
But with the game on the line Sunday, the Bucs with the ball and driving for the winning score, it was Bobby Rainey on the field.
Yes, Martin had his knee dinged up earlier, but Lovie Smith insisted last night that Martin was healthy in the fourth quarter and Rainey was a tactical choice.
“Doug did go down with a little minor injury there, so we had to make a change, and from there he was able to come back and he was ready to go,” Lovie said on Total Access on WDAE-AM 620. “Bobby had come and had given us a little bit of life, and as I’ve mentioned we want to play more than one running back throughout. So it was just a perfect time to keep both of them involved.”
Martin was seen going to the locker room but did return. There were various reports that it was a shoulder injury and others said his leg was wrapped, but so far owners don't have a lot to go on. It wasn't an impressive start for Martin in a tough matchup against the Panthers, he led the team in carries with nine but only totaled nine rushing yards. He had one catch for seven yards. It's a situation worth monitoring as Martin's status with the team and Smith has been a bit of a roller coaster.
Bucs RB Doug Martin had lower left leg wrapped, said someone rolled on his leg. Said wait and see on severity.
Bobby Rainey and Mike James are, of course, next in line. Martin can't seem to stay on the field and only had nine carries for nine yards when he was in action, but it was a tough matchup against the Panthers, too. We'll continue to keep you updated as we hear more. Tampa hosts the Rams in a late afternoon game in Week 2.
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