New offensive coordinator Dave Canales is already building out his staff, and has brought in a key Dallas Cowboys coach to help fix the run game.
It’s not taking long for new Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive coordinator Dave Canales to start building something new out of the ashes of last season. Canales has been in his new role for about a week and is already piecing together a staff that is looking to fix some of what went so horribly wrong in 2022.
Notably, the Buccaneers run game was a stain the team would like to wash out. Tampa Bay rushing attack was among the worst in the league last season, despite having Leonard Fournette and Rachaad White trying to do the best they could.
To help try and fix that problem, the Buccaneers have brought in Skip Peete to be the team’s new running backs coach. Fans might not know his name, but they’ll know the names of the running backs he coached in Dallas.
“Former Cowboys running back coach Skip Peete tells me he is headed to the Tampa Bay Bucs in the same role,” NFL Network’s Jane Slater reported. “Peete notably coached a trio of backs in Ezekiel Elliott, Tony Pollard and Malik Davis who all finished the year without any fumbles and is credited with Pollard’s development.”
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Bringing in the guy who helped coach the one of the league’s best rushing attacks to fix one of its worst seems like a pretty good idea. Peete getting the most out of Tony Pollard should be particularly exciting for Bucs fans and what it could mean for the future Rachaad White has in Tampa Bay.
If Leonard Fournette isn’t a cap causality this offseason — which it’s looking like he might be — he’ll surely be in for a bounce back season under Peete’s coaching. In fact, if Fournette is looking to wait on cashing in on his success in Tampa with a bigger deal somewhere else, adding a year under Peete might be the best thing for him.
Of course, with the Bucs roughly $55 million over the cap entering the offseason, Fournette is a prime candidate to be cut to get that figure back to where it needs to be.
That dovetails into the question of what Peete will do with the Bucs running back room. If Fournette is jettisoned to save cap space, that leaves White as the top back and Ke’Shawn Vaughn as the only other running back under contract. A low-risk replacement for Fournette could be Rashaad Penny, a former first-round pick plagued by injuries in Seattle but similar in size to the man he’d be replacing. It also makes logical sense in that he’d be following Canales from the Seahawks down to Tampa Bay and linking up with a running back coach who could help revive his career.
Beyond any knee-jerk speculation, it’s exciting to see the Bucs adding a coach like Peete to try and fix one of the worst parts of the team’s offense last season. Whether it works is yet to be seen, but Dave Canales is already having a positive impact before all of his boxes have been unpacked in his office.