Heading into last season, Doug Martin was receiving all of the hype as he came off a career-year in 2015. He had some troubles last season, but if he can return to the back he was just a few years ago, he’ll be a steal in fantasy. He’s expected to be the starter in Tampa Bay this season and the two-time Pro Bowl running back has looked good in camp.
Martin is a threat out of the backfield, he’s a good goal-line rusher and he can break off big runs. When healthy and on the field, Martin can be one of the top backs in the league. And even though there are other backs in Tampa, the Bucs gave Martin plenty of touches once he returned from injury at the end of last season. In his final six games, Martin averaged 21.3 touches.
Fantasy owners who draft Martin will be without him for the first three games of the season as he serves a suspension. Then there’s also a chance he gets hurt, as he’s been injury-prone throughout his career.
Despite all of those troubles, Martin even struggled on the football field. He averaged 2.9 yards a carry last season in eight games and didn’t have a big role in the passing game once he returned from injury.
2017 Bottom Line
There are some rumblings Martin’s starting job isn’t guaranteed by the time he returns in Week 4. If Jacquizz Rodgers plays well, why not ride the hot hand? Martin’s off-field problems also carry some risk as a fantasy owner, although he appears to be getting better. Martin clearly isn’t in the same position he was last year, but if things fall correctly, he could end up being a value pick later in the draft.