Doug Martin‘s once-promising tenure in Tampa Bay has come to an end.
Buccaneers General Manager Jason Licht told Martin this morning that he’s being released, Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times reports.
Although Martin is a two-time Pro Bowl running back, the move comes as no surprise. Licht said last month that Martin didn’t look the same as he had early in his career. Given that Martin was due a $6.75 million base salary this season, it wouldn’t have made sense for Licht to keep him.
Martin arrived as the Buccaneers’ first-round draft pick in 2012 and made the Pro Bowl as a rookie, when he rushed for 1,454 yards and 11 touchdowns, and added 49 catches for 472 receiving yards. Unfortunately, Martin has now played five more seasons since then, and those rookie numbers all remain career highs.
The 29-year-old Martin will now hit free agency and hope some team thinks he’s worth paying like a starter. He certainly won’t make $6.75 million after gaining a career-low 406 yards last year.