Tampa could have picked up Doug Martin’s fifth-year option. That option would have given Doug Martin a $5.6 million dollar salary and another year to negotiate a new contract. Declining his option in order to put a fire under him seems to have backfired. Martin and Tampa are in the midst of contract negotiations that will likely pay him close to $7 million, per year. The Buccaneers are rumored to be nearing a deal with the running back, but the Raiders and 49ers are also chasing after him. Although Tampa seems to be the front-runner in signing the fifth-year running back, free agency does not open until 4 p.m. ET on March 9th.