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Buccaneers bench Doug Martin for rule violation

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers didn't have Doug Martin to help them against the Atlanta Falcons on Monday night.

The veteran running back was a healthy scratch for the Buccaneers because he violated a team rule regarding a meeting, coach Dirk Koetter said after the team's 24-21 loss. A source told NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport that the rule violation was minor, and he should be back on the field for the Bucs' final two games.

Martin has had a bumpy ride since missing the first four games of the season to serve a suspension for violating the league's drug policy. In nine games, he's rushed for 402 yards and three touchdowns for a Tampa Bay squad that has struggled to find traction after entering the season with high expectations.

Still, Martin is the team's leading rusher. Peyton Barber and Jacquizz Rodgers haven't fared any better in jumpstarting a Bucs rushing game that ranks 30th in the league.

Martin's absence against a Falcons team eager to stay in the competitive NFC playoff race complicated matters for Jameis Winston and the rest of the Buccaneers, who dealt with a slew of injuries during the loss.

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