Loser: Run Game
Somewhere, Byron Leftwich is smiling.
For as much flak as he took last season for how bad the Buccaneers run game was, things didn’t look much better on Saturday night.
Dave Canales was hired to come in and fix what Leftwich was accused of breaking, but through the first two preseason games the Bucs rushing attack is averaging fewer than 70 yards per game. To be fair, Rachaad White has yet to make an appearance and he’s such an x-factor that he could single handily turn things around. Still, the running back depth is leaving a lot to be desired and the 72 total yards the unit turned in against the Jets is hardly doing much to quell fears.
Winner: Rakim Jarrett
One name a lot of folks circled heading into training camp was Rakim Jarrett. The undrafted rookie out of Maryland was getting some early praise from Dave Canales, and that was promptly backed up on Saturday against the Jets.
Jarrett missed the preseason opener last Friday against the Steelers, but he made the most of his debut in the team’s second matchup. He needed just three catches to rack up 84 yards and turn in one of the best moments of the night.
That’s not only a highlight for Jarrett, but it’s the top highlight result for Kyle Trask too. It was a dime from Trask, but Jarrett finding a way to pull that pass in is why so many folks in Tampa Bay are excited about what he can bring to the offense.
Just like Trey Palmer, Jarrett could be relied on even more than originally intended after the loss of Russell Gage this past week. There’s an opportunity for guys to step up and fill the void, and Jarrett lived up to the billing in his first appearance of the preseason.