The Buccaneers will have bigger problems than a running back when they face off with the Colts this week.
Running backs are flashy players in the NFL, but they don’t change games. In the modern game, scheme matters far more than the player for every team other than the Titans, and the Buccaneers know this well.
It doesn’t matter who you bring to Tampa; the run will struggle. The offense line is talented, but the running scheme just isn’t good. Running in predictable instances had made the run an afterthought in the Buccaneer offense, which isn’t always a bad thing.
As the Buccaneers start to look ahead to their matchup with the Colts this weekend, some fans may point out the need to create a defensive game plan around star running back Jonathan Taylor, but this couldn’t be a worse decision.
The Bucs already have one of the best run stopping units in the NFL, with or without Vita Vea, and trying to take the run away from the Colts is a bad idea. Opposing quarterbacks have put together some great games against this defense, even when fully healthy. The Bucs, and every NFL team for that matter, would be happy for their opponent to run the ball the whole game.
If the Colts want to give Taylor the ball 30 times in the game averaging five yards per carry, this will only eat up clock time against an offense that is doubling that production per completion passing the ball every time.
The best running back in the NFL doesn’t hold a candle to mediocre quarterbacks from a yards per play standpoint, and if the Colts want to waste their time establishing the run, Tampa should let them.
The Buccaneers need to focus on shutting down the pass. If you can do that in the modern NFL, you essentially win on defense either way.
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