Early Fantasy Football Outlooks: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Running Backs
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Running Backs
In the world of fantasy football, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back situation is as murky as ever, and it feels like this is going to be tough to manage all season long with guys sharing touches. Leonard Fournette was the guy most used toward the end of the season and throughout the playoffs, while at the beginning of last season, it was Ronald Jones. Giovanni Bernard enters the mix as that third-down veteran back that they’ll bring in if anything should happen to Fournette or Rojo. Keyshawn Vaughn was a third-round draft pick but seems to be on the roster bubble this year after Bruce Arians shared some frustration after Vaughn skipped out on OTAs. He may be able to resurrect himself with another team, but it’s hard to see it happening with the Bucs.
Based on ADP, people may have forgotten back to Week 13 last season when Ronald Jones was clearly the starting running back for the Buccaneers. He had 192 scrimmage yards and two touchdowns against the Carolina Panthers, including that 98-yard touchdown rush. At the time, Leonard Fournette was a healthy scratch. He was inactive for weeks until Ronald Jones broke his finger and at the same time tested positive for coronavirus, which forced him to miss three weeks after that. The team seemed close to cutting Leonard Fournette, and that’s the type of guy that when he’s not happy, he’s going to let you know about it.
There may be a huge opportunity here for Jones because when he has been cast as a lead running back, he’s done great. The team does not trust Jones on third downs at all, they don’t trust him as a pass blocker, and they don’t quite trust him yet as a pass-catcher. Fournette still feels basically undraftable because Jones will just be getting more touches on the earlier downs, and Giovani Bernard might be better for them at the third-down situations.
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