At bet365, we don’t do ordinary.
And neither does Washington Commanders rookie defensive back Jartavius ‘Quan’ Martin.
The 2023 second-round draft pick made the highlight play of his young career in the Commanders’ Week 9 win against the New England Patriots, intercepting quarterback Mac Jones with 30 seconds remaining in the game and Washington clinging to a 3-point lead.
With New England nearing field-goal range, veteran cornerback Kendall Fuller deflected Jones’ pass into the hands of Martin, who held onto the ball for the game-sealing interception.
“Kendall Fuller had great coverage on the play and forced a tough catch,” Martin said. “Just being able to locate the ball and change direction and go get it was great. A great feeling just to have that ball in my hand.”
It was only Martin’s 32nd defensive snap of his NFL career, and his first interception. The rookie’s game-changing play brought the Commanders to 4-5 and right back into the NFC playoff picture.
“My versatility on the field,” Martin said. “Just being able to come in and contribute at any position in the secondary.”
Drafted out of Illinois, Martin carved his path to the NFL with his eye-popping athleticism and ability to play multiple positions.
At the NFL Scouting Combine, Martin jumped higher than any other player with a 44-inch vertical. His 1.47 second 10-yard split was bested by just two players. His 4.46 40-yard dash was ranked third-best among safeties.
Simply put, Martin was arguably the best athlete to enter the NFL in 2023.
“I always knew I would test well,” Martin said. “I knew the jumping ability was there, I knew the speed was there, the fluidity, everything.”
On the field, Martin impressed scouts with his versatility.
The Florida native played cornerback as a freshman at Illinois, then moved to safety midway through his sophomore season before eventually starring at the nickel position in 2023, earning All-Big Ten honors and driving the nation’s top-scoring defense.
Martin has increased his snap count with each game in the NFL, and looks poised to continue carving out his role in Washington as the 2023 season rolls on.
“Being able to come in here and allow [the coaches] to add value to my game, playing safety, nickel, dime, wherever it was,” Martin said. “They just coached me up and added value to my game in each and every position.”