Everyone seems to agree that rookie Rachaad White is a better running back for the Buccaneers than Leonard Fournette, but why doesn’t the split show that?
It seemed like the Buccaneers had finally started to figure out what the rest of the world saw when watching each games; Rachaad White is the best running back on the roster.
There has been a lot working against Leonard Fournette this season, from injuries to the pressure of having a hot, young name behind him, but there are just too many moments where his backup shines to argue that he still deserves his current role.
A Fournette injury thrust White into the starting role a few months back. White playing so well seemed to solidify his role as the guy for the future, but Fournette has crept back into the lead role despite White not slowing up.
A quick look at the stats would be enough of a justification for most people (72 rushing yards, 90 receiving yards, and a touchdown in the win over the Cardinals), but the issue here is that these are far more the product of volume more than they are a product of extra talent over White.
A couple of long receptions have a nice way of inflating a box score in favor of Fournette, but no one should just look at his stats relative to White’s as a way of justifying the touch share.
Still, we haven’t seen much from this staff to indicate that they are going to take these factors under advisement in who they play going forward, and it seems like good games like that will lead to more of a split backfield role as the staff gets production out of Fournette; even if he is not as good as White as a runner, blocker, or pass-catcher.
To be fair, how do you bench a guy that is putting up Fournette’s numbers? The Bucs essentially have their hands tied, but if they get the end result, perhaps it isn’t that big of a deal.
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