Doug Martin helped himself

USA TODAY Sports

According to Pro Football Focus, Doug Martin faced eight men in the box on just 16.3% of his carries, a number that ranks 27th in the NFL and well below the league average of 23.25%. The league leader wasFrank Gore, who faced eight men in the box on a ridiculous 42.25% of all carries.http://www.bucsnation.com/2013/5/11/4321428/buccaneers-passing-game-was-very-important-for-doug-martin

Based upon the aforementioned, one would believe that Martin would probably perform better when Freeman passes for more yards. But there exists a negative caveat: Martin is simply a byproduct of the offense and can easily be replaced. And here goes our quest into yet another Hockey Duckie Stat Voyage:

Freeman vs Martin



G


Pass


Play


%


Rush


Play


%


W/L


Free


Pass


yards


Doug


Rush


yards


Pass


minus


Rush


Car


0.4

0.6

Win

138

95

43

NYG


0.56

0.44

Loss

243

66

177

Dal


0.53

0.47

Loss

110

53

57

Was


0.68

0.32

Loss

299

33

266

AVG


197.5

61.75

135.75

Ratio


0.312


KC


0.52

0.48

Win

328

76

252

NO


0.64

0.36

Loss

420

85

335

Min


0.47

0.53

Win

262

135

127

Oak


0.48

0.52

Win

247

251

-4

SD


0.48

0.52

Win

210

68

142

Car


0.61

0.39

Win

248

138

110

AVG


285.83

125.5

160.33

Ratio


0.439


Atl


0.6

0.4

Loss

256

50

206

Den


0.65

0.35

Loss

242

56

186

Phi


0.52

0.48

Loss

189

128

61

NO


0.77

0.23

Loss

279

16

263

StL


0.71

0.29

Loss

372

62

310

Atl


0.54

0.46

Win

222

142

80

AVG


260

75.66

184.33

Ratio


0.291


Ratio is Doug’s rush divided by Freeman’s passing yards.

2012


Freeman’s


QBR and Comp %


G


Comp


%


QBR


Doug


Rush


yards


Car


66.7

62.9

95

NYG


53.6

59.6

66

Dal


35.7

5.3

53

Was


61.5

48.2

33

KC


57.7

65.2

76

NO


57.1

77.2

85

Min


52.8

68.2

135

Oak


60.0

71.8

251

SD


70.0

94.4

68

Car


54.3

65.5

138

Atl


63.3

76.6

50

Den


46.2

50.7

56

Phi


41.2

45.9

128

NO


55.3

11.0

16

StL


55.6

8.9

62

Atl


54.3

77.5

142

Based upon the two charts above, I do not see how Freeman has helped Martin improve. In fact, in the last six game sets, we see Freeman averaging 260 yards passing per game, a 10% drop from the middle six set. But Martin’s rushing dropped by 40% from an average of 125.5 yards per game to 75.66 yards per game. Something happened, but it surely did not help Martin’s production in the last six game set.

Here is a simply hypothesis: if Freeman passes more, then the run game should produce more. The original premise was that because Freeman and the passing game, Martin rarely saw eight men in the box to prevent him from running amok. Right now we have a lot of stats. Let us take a closer look at the games when the offense threw for 60% or more of the total play calls.

Pass Ratio vs Martin’s Rushing


G


Pass


Ratio


Martin


Rush


Yards


W/L


Was

0.68

33

Loss

NO


0.64

85

Loss

Car


0.61

138

Win

Atl


0.6

50

Loss

Den


0.65

56

Loss

NO


0.77

16

Loss

StL


0.71

62

Loss

Total

440


Avg

62.8


In those seven games, Martin averaged 62.8 yards per game. His total in those seven games was 440 yards rushing. The total rushing yards for Doug was 1454 yards for 2012 season. That means for the rest of the nine games, Martin rushed for 1014 yards. Within that nine game span, the average that Doug rushed for was about 112.67 yards per game! A huge difference of 49.86 rushing yards per game, or about 50 yards per game differential!

It is also odd to notice that of those seven games where the play calling asked for more passing did the team lose six games. That’s just for 60% passing and above. But I digress.

A caveat could arise to where some may say that the team was forced to throw in those games. So does that mean when Martin is in the game and the team needs to get score in a hurry that they do not play the run as we play the run? How often does that occur? And is that negated from a stat where running may play a better importance?

Frank Gore rushed for the San Francisco 49ers, a playoff team whose regular season record was 12 wins and 4 losses. Can you imagine all the situations where the ‘Niners would love to run the clock out with the lead?

Thus, this is my rebuttal for not believing that Freeman builds Martin’s run game. I simply do not see the pattern. If someone else can show me the pattern besides having eight men in the box stat, then I would be much obliged, but until then, I believe Martin and a good rushing team will lead the team to more wins than relying on Freeman to make the rush team, including Martin better. I believe more rushing plays will help Martin and the rush team more than Freeman passing.

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