After agreeing to a 4 year deal worth 17 million dollars in the offseason, there were some big expectations for Derrick Ward and the Bucs running attack heading into the 2009 season.
“I think my style of running, my style of play will fit in perfect. We have all the key components for a great offense,” Ward said. “With the transactions they made this offseason, it only bolstered the offense, so I’m looking forward to great things.”
He couldn’t have been more off base. I’m fairly sure that Ward’s lack of effectiveness wasn’t directly attributable to only himself, but a fair share of Ward’s disappointing season much be put squarely on the backs of the coaches and the offensive line.
Ward only got 10+ carries 5 times. He only received 15+ carries one time. He only topped 60 yards two times.
He ended with 114 carries for 409 yards and 1 TD. He was supposed to be a real threat in the receiving game, but only caught 20 passes for 150 yards and 2 TD’s.
As mentioned earlier, its hard for me to place all the blame squarely on Ward as he didn’t get the chances in either the running attack or the passing game to truly be effective, but nonetheless, his numbers were disappointing.
Final Grade C-