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Martin Makes for Tough Task

Posted Nov 28, 2012

The Denver defense is gearing up for a powerful Tampa Bay rushing attack, led by rookie phenom Doug Martin.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- For the first time in nearly two months, the Broncos allowed a running back to top the 100-yard rushing mark on Sunday against Kansas City.

The Denver defense is spending the week ensuring that it doesn't happen in consecutive games, with the league's fourth-leading rusher coming to town in Tampa Bay's Doug Martin.

"We already corrected it," linebacker Wesley Woodyard said. "We've been working on it. (The Chiefs) attacked our edge and got us running sideways, and that's something that we can't do."

Woodyard calls the NFL "a copy-cat league," and expects the Buccaneers to emulate some of what the Kansas City Chiefs did to get Jamaal Charles going.

"Anytime a team has success, other teams are going to try to bite off it," he said. "Whatever they throw on the table, we've got to be ready to eat."

Martin, a rookie, has topped the 100-yard mark in three of the Bucs' last five games - including a 251-yard performance against the Raiders -- totaling seven rushing touchdowns in that span.

"Being a rookie, I haven't seen a whole lot of him," Head Coach John Fox said. "On a short look, you turn on that Raider tape, and he's efficient. He's got good power,

even in tight spots. He can take you the distance when he gets into the secondary, so he's definitely on our radar."

Looking at what Martin has done recently and against other teams in the AFC West, safety Mike Adams is prepared for a tall task. The rookie had an explosive performance against Oakland, but also averaged 5.8 yards per carry against Kansas City.

"He's come along," Adams said. "He had a slow start at the beginning of the season, then he came along against Kansas City, then Oakland. Basically they were running through this division, so it will be a big challenge for us."

Tampa Bay's first-year Head Coach Greg Schiano has brought with him a "hard-nose style of play," defensive tackle Justin Bannan said. With their two starting guards on injured reserve, Tampa Bay has been able to maintain a successful ground game. It's a testament to the team's new mentality that begins with running the football.

"That running back -- he's the real deal," defensive tackle Justin Bannan said. "There's no doubt about that. They've done a great job against everyone in our division and we're the last team. There's no doubt we've got to bring our best game this Sunday."

Even with a feisty opponent coming to Denver on Sunday, Woodyard remains confident.

"We've just got to play our defense," Woodyard said. "That's the only thing that's going to stop us, is our defense."