Doug Martin Listed as Healthy Scratch for Buccaneers vs. Saints

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistDecember 24, 2016

TAMPA, FL - NOVEMBER 27: Doug Martin #22 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers runs with the ball against the Seattle Seahawks during the game at Raymond James Stadium on November 27, 2016 in Tampa, Florida. The Buccaneers defeated the Seahawks 14-5. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Doug Martin was listed as a healthy scratch for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' game against the New Orleans Saints.

Martin, 27, already missed six games earlier in the season with a hamstring injury. His injury woes have been a major blow for the Buccaneers, especially after Martin was so good in the 2015 season, rushing for 1,402 yards and totaling seven touchdowns.

Now he's out of the lineup due to a coach's decision, per ESPN.com.

He was expected to be one of the centerpieces of a talented and young Bucs offense this year that also includes quarterback Jameis Winston and wideout Mike Evans. Instead, Martin has rushed for just 421 yards and three touchdowns.

When Martin was injured, he was missed. Winston commented on that after Martin's first game back from injury against the Chicago Bears on Nov. 14.

"That was amazing to have Doug," Winston told Jenna Laine of ESPN.com. "You just see his presence in him being out there. Guys want to fight for him. The first snap, I said, 'Guys...we have Doug back.'"

Unfortunately for the Bucs, currently battling for a playoff berth and perhaps an NFC South title, it's an inopportune time to be without their leading rusher.

With Martin out, Charles Sims will likely get the start, while Peyton Barber and Jacquizz Rodgers may also see some snaps and touches in the offense.

    

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