Jamaal Charles is likely the heavy favorite in today's poll (he is in average draft position and rankings in your typical magazine ranking), however we're giving rookie Doug Martin a puncher's chance. For one, Martin is likely as adept as Charles at catching passes out of the backfield and Martin is probably far more likely to garner goal line work. If you want a piece of Doug Martin in the 2012 speed bumps you'll need to saddle up to defeat Jamaal Charles.
It was one of the biggest injuries of 2011 - Jamaal Charles' season suddenly ended in Week 2 with a torn ACL. It was likely a kill shot to those who drafted Charles last year, selected with the 5th pick on average in drafts last year. The good news is with the injury happening early in the 2011 season he should have had plenty of time to recover and Charles is still just 25 years old. The downside is the Chiefs have signed Peyton Hillis. New Chiefs' OC Brian Daboll no doubt knows what Hillis brings to the table having been the coordinator in Cleveland in 2010 when Hillis racked up nearly 1600 total yards and 13 TDs (finishing as the #3 fantasy RB). At 250 pounds, Hillis outweighs Charles by 50 pounds and it would stand to reason that Hillis will get all/most of the goal line work. The other concern is how much goal line work will the team even have? The Chiefs finished 27th in total offense last year, 2nd-to-last in total points (a paltry 13 points per game) and a meager 5 rushing TDs on the season. Charles, however, averages nearly an unbelievable 6.1 YPC on 499 career rushing attempts and Kansas City led the league in rushing in 2010.
Doug Martin is a solid two-round average draft position underdog in this poll although he's arguably far more likely to be his team's bellcow running back than Jamaal Charles. Martin is a thickly-built workhorse with good agility and possesses a wide array of moves. He's a rookie so we need to see it on Sundays but Martin is known for having a strong work ethic and posted an impressive 28 bench reps at the Combine. He also posted a 6.79 time in the 3-cone drill, an extremely impressive time for a man his size and ran a 4.49 in the forty. He'll need to beat out incumbent LeGarrette Blount, although Blount was wildly disappointing last season, including five games where he started but rushed for 21 yards or less and Blount struggled to cure a fumbling problem which ultimately caused him to be benched late in the year. The Bucs shipped their No. 36 and No. 101 picks to the Patriots to move into the 1st round position to grab Martin as the second back in the draft after Trent Richardson. In the last three seasons at Boise State, Martin scored 15, 14 and 18 TDs. New Bucs' head coach Greg Schiano is expected to employ a run-heavy offense.
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