April 27, 2011; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers first round draft pick Doug Martin smiles as he talks with the press as he is introduced during a press conference at One Buc Place. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE
We just looked at some of Mark Barron's scouting reports, and Doug Martin has plenty of those as well. Let's delve in.
Final word: Martin will get his chance at the NFL Combine to show scouts, NFL teams, and football fans what is meant by the song, "Teach Me How Too Dougie" by Cali Swag District. Martin has been a very productive runner since his sophomore season. He has a knack for finding the endzone where he has reached at least 12 rushing touchdowns in three consecutive years. He has rushed for over 1,000 yards in 2010 and 2011. Martin is outstanding attacking the outside and more than capable with his strength to run inside. Overall, Martin has the talents to be a productive professional in the NFL and would be great in a dual backfield roll. A team like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers would be a good fit for Martin where he could supply the speed and change of pace to go along with a power back type starter.
RB Martin: Ran with velocity + power. Low center of gravity. Balance + body control. Some wiggle but not elusive. Mentality of feature back.— Greg Cosell (@gregcosell) March 31, 2012
Asked re; Martin. Mentality of feature back. Determined downhill runner w/toughness + physicality. Ran with velocity. Some natural wiggle.— Greg Cosell (@gregcosell) April 7, 2012
Impression: Martin isn't a dynamic size/speed back, but there aren't many negatives to his game as a back. He plays fast, runs low, is natural through the line of scrimmage and has a skill set somewhat similar to former Alabama RB Mark Ingram last year. He might fall a bit because he doesn't run overly well, but he has the skill set to start in the league.
Doug Martin is one of this class's most complete and promising backs. Among other attributes, his combination of vision, balance, and burst stands out on film. He projects as a three down back at the next level, with the receiving and blocking ability necessary to see playing time early. Expect Martin to be the second running back off the board, potentially as early as the middle of the first round.
What he brings: At 5-9, 215 pounds, Martin is built low to the ground, which provides him with great balance and lateral agility. He also brings great versatility in the passing game, both as a blocker and a receiver. He runs good routes and has soft hands.
How he fits: Under new head coach Greg Schiano, this will be a much more run-oriented offense with improved physicality, and right now, starting RB LeGarrette Blount is a one-dimensional, two-down runner with limited production in the passing game. Martin gives them a guy who can play all three downs and contribute as a receiver, and it looks like they have an excellent one-two punch in the upgraded run game. The nice thing about MartinHe can stay on the field on third down.
When analyzing Doug Martin, there's a lot to like, and very few red flags. He's a hyper-motivated gym rat with a chip on his shoulder from his own (most likely legitimate) perception that Boise State got blocked out of championship chances they should have been afforded. He's most likely the most versatile back in this draft class, and the few things he doesn't yet do well (blocking, occasional fumbling, adjusting his center of gravity in key situations) seem like pretty easy fixes.
Talking with Martin at the 2012 scouting combine put me in mind of another underrated college running back who gave an early indicator of the passion with which he would excel in the NFL. I remember Rutgers' Ray Rice telling the media with no lack of certainty that those passing him by because of the "too small-too slow" conclusion would live to regret it. Rice has since become the most well-rounded NFL back not named Adrian Peterson, and I think Doug Martin could eventually meet that same standard.