It’s no secret that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers like to run the ball with Leonard Fournette. While it hasn’t been that successful yet, Buccaneers fans need to be patient as it’ll all work out.
It’s pretty safe to say that the subject of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers establishing the run on early downs is quite the lightning rod issue amongst the Buccaneers community. Offensive Coordinator Byron Leftwich likes to run the ball, even under the “chuck and duck“ approach of former head coach Bruce Arians. Now with new head coach Todd Bowles co-signing on the strategy of establishing the run game, this issue has been exacerbated amongst fans.
It also isn’t helping that even with the high volume that Leonard Fournette is getting on the ground, and honestly in the passing game for that matter, has not resulted in more efficiency. The thing that fans need to remember though, is that this is nothing that the Bucs are not used to. In fact, it was more likely than not something that the team had anticipated coming into the season.
During the 2020 season Fournette got off to such a slow start, to the point that the Buccaneers almost cut him completely. He would come on in a big way during playoff time, and in the Super Bowl, thus forever earning him the nicknames “ Playoff Lenny” and “Lombardi Lenny” as a result. Last year in 2021, he again didn’t exactly come out of the gates firing, albeit not as much as 2020, but his late season surge help propel the Bucs to the playoffs with a ton of momentum, earning yet another nickname, this time “Late Season Lenny”.
The point here is, Fournette always takes a while to get going, he is a veteran running back after all. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers show no desire to give up on the talented back, which is certainly a positive considering how huge he’s been for the team down the stretch and in the postseason when it matters most. Leonard Fournette, the run game, and the all fans are going to be fine. Let’s just take a breath.