The Tampa Bay Buccaneers finally made a move that has been expected the past couple of months, releasing running back Doug Martin from his contract.
Martin has been plagued by injuries over the years and has not lived up to the $6.75 million base salary that he was set to make with Tampa in the 2018 season. Regardless, he is still a veteran running back that plenty of teams will certainly consider bringing in.
Here are five teams that are most likely to make a move for Martin.
5. New York Giants
The New York Giants have been victims of an ineffective offensive line of late, and their running game has suffered as a result.
Orleans Darkwa had his best season as a pro 2017, but he's likely to hit the free agency market. With a need for a veteran rusher to help share the load, Doug Martin could fill that void.
4. New York Jets
The Jets' running game has been inconsistent this past season due to injury.
Matt Forte is expected to be let go by the team due to injuries, and Bilal Powell is reportedly viewed by the team as a "complementary back" as opposed to a workhorse. Martin could be brought in as an affordable option that can pick up the slack for Forte.
3. Miami Dolphins
The Miami Dolphins moved on from Jay Ajayi at the trade deadline, sending him to the Philadelphia Eagles. The team believed in Kenyan Drake, and he did not disappoint when taking over last season.
With Drake having duly earned the majority of carries, he will need a change-of-pace rusher to join him in the backfield. How about a 29-year-old two-time Pro Bowler?
2. New England Patriots
We have to include the New England Patriots here, because whenever there is a veteran player with name value on the market, they will swoop and typically bring the best out of him.
It would not be a surprise if the Patriots were to bring in Martin, who will certainly benefit from Bill Belichick's dynamic deployment of running backs as rushers and pass-catchers. With Dion Lewis expected to leave in free agency, Martin makes for an able replacement.
1. Cleveland Browns
The Cleveland Browns have over $110 million available to address a variety of needs, including at the running back position.
Isaiah Crowell is headed for free agency, leaving Duke Johnson Jr. is the primary back. The Browns could bring in new blood via the NFL Draft, but moving for Martin could be a sneaky value play. He could bring the veteran presence that the team was missing last season all over the field.
With the most money to offer, you can't rule out Martin to heading to The Land.