Doug Martin is off and running in 2015, and his success may be key for the Buccaneers moving forward.
Reinhold Matay/Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
Through the first three weeks of 2015, Doug Martin had gotten off to a solid start. Nothing incredible, but he looked far more explosive than he had in previous seasons after his rookie year. Then, Week 4 rolled around.
Martin had an impressive week during the loss to the Carolina Panthers, rushing 20 times for 106 yards and a touchdown. He also caught five balls for 37 yards, showing his ability to catch passes out of the backfield for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
According to Matt Stein of Sports Talk Florida, a large part of Martin’s strong play is due to him feeling good and building confidence throughout the first few games.
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"Last year I was hit with the injury bug and I was never able to reach 100 percent, but now that I am I feel pretty good and I feel confident in my game," Martin told Sports Talk Florida.
It wasn’t just his own confidence either, as Martin gave strong reviews to the rookies on the offensive line, and the unit as a whole.
"Those guys are playing hard, they’re playing hard and they’re hungry," he said. "Coming in as rookies, they’ll have growing pains but they’re hard workers, they want to win and they’re fighters and it’s the type of guys that, as running backs, we want in front of us blocking."
The more that Martin can get the ball and better he can produce, the easier life becomes on rookie quarterback Jameis Winston. Tampa Bay needs to remain focused on taking as much pressure off Winston as they can, as that will be a key to success moving forward in 2015.