It wasn’t that long ago that Doug Martin was the NFL Rookie of the Year in 2012, rushing 319 times for 1,454 yards and 11 touchdowns while also catching 49 passes and playing in all 16 games.
He hasn’t been the same since.
Martin has played in just 12 games since that year and he’s seen his average gain on running plays drop to 3.3 yards.
Martin doesn’t share the doubts about his game, and says “he’s the same player” that won the award.
“I don’t say anything,” Martin said, via ESPN.com. “That’s something you’ve got to ignore. That’s just outside noise. You’ve just got to ignore that and keep playing the game and having confidence in my game. It’s just something that you’ve got to brush off.”
Injuries have kept Martin off the field far too often and he’s also been running behind a subpar offensive line, a combination that certainly hasn’t helped him remain at a high level. Proving the critics wrong is going to take finding the right formula to succeed in spite of those obstacles, though, and Martin’s going to need to do that soon if he wants to be more than just another guy in Tampa or elsewhere.
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