Let’s discuss an issue with our Tampa Bay Buccaneers that most NFL teams would love to have, a crowded backfield.
Aside from the ‘muscle hamster’ aka Doug Martin, there doesn’t seem to be much separation between the rest of the running backs, including JacQuizz Rodgers, Charles Simms and Peyton Barber, in that order. All three played important roles during the 2016 season when Martin was out due to injury or suspension.
Charles Simms was given the shot last year at the starting position, but lacked durability with injuries, and when he did make it onto the field, his production was minimal at best.
Peyton Barber was another running back that was quite inconsistent last year. However, he is going to make the team because the coaching staff loves how hard Barber runs as well as his pass catching ability out of the backfield.
The savior of last season was JacQuizz Rodgers. He took the starting job once Martin and Simms went down with injury. Rodgers took that opportunity and literally ran with it, without having to look over his shoulder. He finished last season with multiple 100 yard rushing games. The biggest black mark on JacQuizz is that many believe he is not an every down back at this point in his career. Let’s hope they’re wrong.
Notice I left out rookie running back Jeremy McNichols? We discussed yesterday why he will be cut tomorrow when the rosters are trimmed to 53 men. He just doesn’t have what it takes, and is especially weak with protection schemes, which are vital for not only the teams success, but more importantly for the health of the face of our franchise, famous Jameis Winston.
With Dougie Fresh suspended for the first 3 games, look for Rodgers to carry the bulk of the load to begin the year. Be forewarned, the running game may struggle early, but with the return of the Muscle Hamster from suspension should jump start the running game, making our offense that much more lethal. One. More. Week. Bucs fans. Let’s get this party started.
Edited by: Harmeet Kapur