Doug Martin struggles against Cardinals, but fantasy value remains high

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Doug Martin struggled in Week 4. We break down the fantasy implications.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Doug Martin is one of the better running backs in the NFL, but he struggled mightily against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday. Martin's struggles can likely be tied to one move in particular: a change at the quarterback position, as the team went from Josh Freeman to Mike Glennon.

Why is the change so significant for Martin? Simple: Glennon is a rookie selected in the third round this season, and it was clear from the onset that the Buccaneers didn't want to put too much on his plate. Martin ended up carrying the ball 27 times, and he only managed to pick up 45 yards. That's a per-carry average of just 1.7 yards, an astoundingly low number for someone like Martin.

Glennon, of course, did end up throwing the ball 43 times regardless, but that's probably less than Freeman would have thrown in that game. The point is that Martin struggled, though he did struggle against Arizona's rush defense, which is currently No. 2 in the NFL at 75 yards per game allowed on average.

Fantasy Impact: Martin has been solid in fantasy thus far, outside of his inability to find the end zone. He remains a must-start for fantasy owners, but him failing to pick things up when the Buccaneers needed him the most is disappointing. It was not a strong week to say the least, but fans should feel confident in him going forward, especially given the poor Philadelphia rushing defense he'll take on in Week 5.

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