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Licht: Martin looks “as good as I’ve ever seen him”

The Bucs’ general manager also had high praise for Jameis Winston.

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at San Diego Chargers Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are really optimistic about their team this year. Of course, what would be the point of playing if they weren’t?

General manager Jason Licht had a lot of positive things to say about the team as a whole and Jameis Winston in particular this morning on NFL Network. He was particularly praising Jameis Winston’s leadership, and his off-field work.

“Just forming that camaraderie,” Licht said. “And I feel like we're going to be one step ahead with that quarterback ... who does a great job of doing that and getting them together."

None of that is new, and of course a general manager praising his own player isn’t particularly surprising either, but it’s still good to hear.

More interesting was Licht’s quotes on Doug Martin. Specifically, he said that Doug Martin looks “as good as [he’s] ever seen. [..] Both mentally and physically he’s been pretty good.”

It’s a good quote, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that much. For one, we hear these “best shape of his life” quotes every year, and then players get cut at the end of training camp. That’s unlikely to happen to Doug Martin, but any expectation that he’s going to be terrific this season should probably be tempered.

Which would probably be why Licht also said something about them liking the rest of the backfield, in particular Jacquizz Rodgers, who’s going to have to lead the group for at least the first three games of the season, when Martin’s still suspended.