Bucs' Koetter on Martin's touches vs. Saints: 'Do the math'
Something didn't add up following the Bucs 24-17 loss to the New Orleans Saints as running back Doug Martin had only 11 carries for 81 yards against the league's worst rush defense.
But Bucs offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter says it's really a simple equation if you do the math.
“We ran (52) plays in the game,'' Koetter said Tuesday. "It’s a story of third downs. We converted 36 percent, I think they converted somewhere in the 70’s. They ran 78 plays. We ran 52 or whatever it was. Fifty-two. Let’s do the math backwards. Fifty-two, we had a five play, two minute drive at the end of the first half. We went down and got a field goal. Good job by the guys executing. We got the ball back with 13 minutes to go in the fourth quarter down two scores. We had a nine-play touchdown drive. You know how many times we ran it in that drive? Anybody? One. I didn’t hear anybody complaining. We went right down and scored. Got it back to a one score game. We got the ball back one more time, five minutes to go in the game. Doug had a beautiful run, two great blocks on the perimeter. He had a 24 yard run. We threw three passes in a row. One incomplete. One overthrown. One dropped. Game over.
'So we had (52) plays in the game, I think with runs and passes Doug had with targets and touches, 14. Chuck (Sims) had 13. Then it goes down to Austin (Seferian-Jenkins) six, Mike (Evans) four. I always like to say, anyone who talks about touches, do the math working backwards. How many plays did you have? Divide up how many times you want every guy to touch it and then try to make that equation work out. I would love for Doug to touch it 25 times in every game. But the one thing I’m always talking about, when you’re the play-caller, you always have to deal with time and score, time and score, time and score. That dictates a lot.''
It was the second time in three weeks that Martin had 14 or fewer rushing attempts in a loss. He carried 14 times for 97 yards in a 25-12 loss to the Colts. Martin had only three touches in the second half following a 56-yard run.
“I think Doug has done a fantastic job this year with his touches,'' Koetter said. "The numbers back that up. But it is what it is for this game. I wish he got 25 but he didn’t.''