The Tampa Bay Buccaneers may have themselves a two-headed monster in the backfield. Here’s how the Buccaneers can approach the running game.
Running the football may not be as much of the norm as it once was, but having an established run game is still as important as ever, especially down the stretch and in the playoffs. Unfortunately for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, they have not been able to sustain this, but certainly not for lack of effort. Fortunately, the Buccaneers may now have the necessary ingredients to a proven formula to help solve this issue.
The “thunder and lightning” approach to the running game is one that’s tried and true. You have the smaller back handle most of the passing work, if not the every-down role due to taking less punishment, while you have the bigger more bruising back be the sledgehammer in power-run situations to wear down the defense. The bell-cow back approach wasn’t working, and now the Bucs have the established horses to make this new approach go.
Leonard Fournette may not be a giant, but he is still a strong runner whose body could use a break from the beatings it’s taken. Handling less of a load could benefit not only himself but the team as a whole. His value as a receiver is an added bonus. With this lightened load, perhaps we’ll see the return of Late Season Lenny, and quite possibly Playoff Lenny if cards are played right.
Then there’s Rachaad White.
White’s emergence as a rookie has been a real breath of fresh air, as the he’s proven he can do it all as a running back. He’s also proven he can handle the duties necessary for an every-down back when called upon. This would make him the perfect lightning to Lenny’s thunder.
Will this be the magic formula to suddenly turn the Tampa Bay Buccaneers into Super Bowl contenders? Of course not. However, any improvement is a positive, and this time of year an established run-game is crucial. With this approach, the pirate ship may be able to steer out of the rough waters now that there’s another valuable member of the crew on board.