If the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are drafting a running back for their first pick, then which running back should be the Buccaneers’ first draft pick?
If that sounds a little like “How much wood could a woodchuck chuck…” then you caught me! Hey, it’s time to have a little fun, after all, it’s mock draft season, which, as we all know started waaaaaay back in the Cretaceous Period for all the 2021 NFL mock drafts, week 2 or 3 of the 2020 NFL season! Although in some cases, even before that. So, we ask, are the Tampa Bay Buccaneers drafting a running back for their first pick?
Now that the Bucs have: 1. “Playoff/Lombardi Lenny” who has signed for another one-year deal; 2. The ever-improving and hopefully healthy Rojo; and 3. 2020 new kid on the block, Ke’Shawn Vaughn, adding depth at running back should be all they need to do with that position. So what’s all the hubbub about the possibility of not one but TWO of the top running back prospects in this year’s draft being available at pick 32?
As the mocking continues, I mean mock drafting continues, every Nostradamus (if not at least many out there) seems to have the cookie crumbling where the Bucs just might have their pick of the litter and could very well nab one of the 2 prime backs; Alabama’s Najee Harris, or Travis Etienne from Clemson! This truly is a real possibility!
So, the obvious question is, if the Bucs had the choice, who would or should they draft if, and only IF, they are drafting a running back for their first pick? These two seem to be bouncing back and forth as to who is the top RB, so in reality, either one could be a winner for the Bucs. But we all know spending draft capital on drafting a running back can be a costly venture, to say the least.
Some, however, turn out pretty well like Alvin Kamara and Aaron Jones, while others start out with a bang then get hit with the injury bug, like Saquon Barkley, although he could easily have another stellar year this year if he remains healthy. To be honest, Harris or Etienne could be either type for all we know.
To briefly break down each back, let’s see what they would bring to this Bucs offense: [Ding Ding]
The Buccaneers would be lucky to add either back
At 6’ 2” and weighing in at 230, the all-around back out of Alabama has the sheer will and determination to get those extra yards and also has a knack for finding pay dirt! He could be compared to his fellow ‘Tide alum, Derrick Henry, and I can see him challenging both Lenny and Rojo for RB1 status.
Not saying he would be a day 1 starter, but Harris could make his way up there in a few weeks. The other point that makes him a desirable back for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers is his formerly underrated pass-catching ability, something quite lacking with the crew the Bucs have on board right now. Harris would be a welcomed addition to an already potent offensive unit and he could make the Bucs even BETTER than last year! Just think about THAT for a minute!
This Clemson Tiger wants to prove that running backs still have value in today’s NFL. That’s saying something, since……well they all say that! But there’s something this kid has as well that’s pretty special. He’s not just saying it, he’s been proving it on the field for the last couple years, and his development additionally in the pass game also makes him a desirable piece to add to the arsenal of weapons at Tom Brady’s hands!
An incredible skill player, and a balanced, disciplined game, Etienne stayed for his senior year, stating it was “the best decision he could have made,” and honed his talents to improve his draft stock. At 5’10” and 215 lbs, he’s going to be a force to reckoned with.
This is one choice that the Bucs couldn’t get wrong even if they tried. Both have been vying for number one back to be taken, and the boards have them bouncing back and forth. Either would be a great fit.
Personally, if the Bucs had the choice, and both of these young men ended up dropping down the board, and I were in the hallowed draft bunker, I would probably take the pick that would be the most like an Alvin Kamara/Dalvin Cook type of back in….. Travis Etienne! My gut says the kid would be just what the Bucs need, and for me, he slightly tips the scale in his favor.