Buccaneers HC Lovie Smith called Doug Martin the team's bell cow in August, and Martin's photograph stares out from billboards near Raymond James Stadium. Martin, who hasn't addressed reporters this week, got many of the reps with the first team during drills.
Smith said Martin's role will be to get "back into the mix." Martin's health will help determine how many offensive touches he gets and whether he can step into the role Smith envisioned for him months ago.
"Yes, we would like to see one of our running backs rush for 200 yards and he becomes the bell-cow role," Smith said. "But Doug is back this week, and that's a good thing. He's looked pretty good in practice, and we feel real good about that group, whatever three or four we go with."
It's shaping up to be an ugly three-headed committee in Week 12, but we believe the team wants to see what they have in Charles Sims. Unfortunately, he's questionable with an ankle injury after sitting out most of the season (with an ankle injury), so that certainly limits his upside.