August 24, 2011; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Doug Martin (22) reacts with tight end Danny Noble (86) and tight end Luke Stocker (88) after he scored a touchdown during the first quarter against the New England Patriots at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers had two first-round picks during this year's NFL draft, and both Mark Barron and Doug Martin have looked good in the preseason. Good enough, apparently, to be featured among SB Nation's bloggers as likely to win Defensive Rookie of the Year and Offensive Rookie of the Year respectively. When asked to choose the Offensive Rookie of the Year, Doug Martin got 8% of the vote - but those 8% represent the best chance of any non-quarterback to win the award. Yes, he was mentioned more often than Justin Blackmon or Trent Richardson - in fact, those players weren't mentioned at all. Beating out Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III and Russell Wilson for this award will be though, though. At least one of those players should have a standout season, and quarterbacks win this award very often, even when they're not all that good (*cough* Sam Bradford).
Mark Barron, meanwhile, got 17% of the vote - which is more than all but one player received. And, interestingly enough, the Bucs will face that one player on Sunday: Panthers rookie linebacker Luke Kuechly, who got 45% of the vote. That seems like a lot for a linebacker, especially one who isn't likely to produce a lot of splash plays, but it wouldn't be the first time for a player like that to win this award. Barron should have a good chance of winning, though, if only because the Bucs will put him in position to produce highlights: sacks, interceptions, big hits, tackles for loss - that's what the team wants out of him. And that's what he'll produce.