Running back rotation
The running back position has received plenty of attention during training camp. From the addition of Ronald Jones and the buzz surrounding undrafted free agent Shaun Wilson, it appeared the Bucs had a solid rotation.
Peyton Barber has been the lone bright spot on the ground for the Buccaneers so far. Even with his role as the number one back solidified, injuries and questionable play have caused many to pump the brakes on Tampa’s backfield situation.
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In his first two NFL games, Jones hasn’t been impressive. He has just 11 yards on 12 carries and hasn’t been able to break through with one of his patented game-breaking runs he displayed at USC.
There isn’t any reason to panic about Jones. He has plenty of time to move up the depth chart and become the lead back. However, it may have caused the coaches to adjust the way they approach their running back rotation.
Jones’ struggles have opened the door for Jacquizz Rodgers, who has spent almost his entire in Dirk Koetter’s offense. A reliable option as a third back, Rodgers may have a more prominent role as Jones gets his feet under him.
Injuries have hurt Wilson’s cause thus far. He suited up for his first NFL game against the Titans and wasn’t a factor on offense, but he was on the field for a ton of special teams snaps.
While he still could make the final roster, Wilson hasn’t made the impact many expected in the preseason to this point. The unheralded Dare Ogunbowale has been the surprise of this group and has done what Wilson was poised to do.
With two games remaining, it will take one standout performance for the running back room to figure itself out. For now, it appears the position sits as Barber and the rest.