A Running Game Born?

August 9th, 2018

Ran like a starter.

For the past two years, the Bucs simply have not had a running game.

For reasons not quite clear, Bucs coach Dirk Koetter was bound and determined to jump-start Muscle Hamster Doug Martin. It didn’t happen and one could argue the offense wasn’t what it should have been as a result.

One reason Koetter rarely gave backup running back Peyton Barber a chance before it was too late was that Koetter was convinced Barber was not Gale Sayers (Joe loves that line).

When Barber did get a chance late last season when Martin was out, he did not embarrass himself.

Now with Martin gone and Ronald Jones going through some rookie struggles, Barber is the No. 1 running back. And tonight in Miami, it was as if he was trying to show Koetter his number should have been called a lot sooner.

The Bucs’ offensive line, banged up on the right side and maligned on the left side, opened up plenty of holes for Barber who demonstrated he could do what Martin apparently couldn’t: read blocks, recognize holes and exploit them.

Martin simply lost all of his vision after 2015. Barber demonstrated he has a lot of vision.

“Just keep showing people what I can do and just helping the offense,” Barber said of his strategy in the first preseason game.

Barber also showed something besides reading his blocks. That would be YAC, yards after contact.

“I think it’s important,” Barber said. “That lets the defense know that I’m going to be coming all day. Setting the tone.”

And while Barber could have easily gloated about his play Thursday night, he had 21 yards on four carries for a 5.3 average, Barber said the rushing attack is not about him.

“I think we have a very special backfield,” Barber said. “I feel like everybody is special in their own way. I feel like I can run in-between the tackles, I can catch, I can block. I feel like Ronald [Jones] can do the same. I feel like we have a really special backfield.”

22 Responses to “A Running Game Born?”

  1. Cs2 Says:

    The jury is still out with RoJo but I think our running game is fine. This just in our kicker missed another fieldgoal

  2. Easy Says:

    Barber is a workhorse

  3. passthebuc Says:

    Get rid of Smith.
    Mike Smith that is.

  4. Season Is Over Says:

    Barber had the first four games of last year to do what Martin couldn’t. Did he? If this team has to rely on an undrafted player to start over a first round RB it could get ugly. What was Rojo’s YPC?

  5. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    That was NOT a good running game. Not even 74 yards rushing???

    Nope. But it is preseason and was Rojo’s first NFL game, and Payton’s first game as the uncontested starter.

  6. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Season Is Over, actually, I think Rodgers started those games.

  7. Ndog Says:

    Bonzai with that comment from Season why would you even try to respond as he cleary has zero clue what he’s talking about?

  8. GrudenForPresident Says:

    who cares about yards? did you negative nancies even watch the game? our backs scored 2 TD’s and consistently moved the ball. most importantly, our defense played great in the redzone as did our offense . and we won. Go Bucs

  9. Knoxville Buc Fan Says:

    28 carries for 73 yards as a whole doesn’t qualify for a run game. Hell not even for Pop Warner. Ok Barber got 21 yards, come on it’s gonna be the same when JW starts in week 4. 275-325 yards passing a game and 73-95 yards rushing a game. Hopefully there’s a whole lot more chest bumps in the end zone this year for the wideouts/tightends. If not we will end up with 3-5 wins and everyone will be fired and it will take another 3 or 4 years to hopefully make some noise in NFC South.

  10. Red86 Says:

    RoJo did good with the first string O line. The other string O line is suspect. The First string was doing their thing make holes for the run.

  11. Knoxville Buc Fan Says:

    Um yards do matter. In fact if it wasn’t for the passing yards on those 2 rushing TD drives we would have got our a$$ stomped. Cause they damn sure didn’t run the ball up and down the field to get down in the red zone to be able to punch those 2 TD’S in.

  12. rrsrq Says:

    Still trying to figure out why they are labeling Chuck Sims a running back

  13. JAB83 Says:

    Hmmmmm, “All Day” has a nice ring to it… Bring it kid!!! I hear you…

  14. Bird Says:

    Fantasy football sleeper for sure

    Barber can carry the load cause ROJO needs some time and a pair of hand implants (with stick em)

  15. Tampaspicer Says:

    They better figure the running game out in preseason or this years run game could be a repeat of last years. I know it’s the 1st game but I wasn’t happy with what I saw tonight.

  16. ChanEpic Says:

    Barber looked solid AF. RoJo.. Um… He needs to keep working put on some muscle weight and keep practicing catching out of the backfield because that is an obvious weakness in your game. This season looks way less ominous because we DO have a nice stable of RBs.

  17. AlteredEgo Says:

    Simms will be gone…the FA DO looked better

  18. T REX Says:

    Running game looked poor. Jones is another 2nd round bust in the making.

    As a 2nd round pick he should’ve beat out Barber.


  19. JimBuc2 Says:

    The game was not shown where I am, in GA, so I had to suffer Gene Deckerhoff’s consistently inaccurate babble. Wish the dude would retire. Example: 23-16 score was repeatedly described as a 6 point lead. As for our offense I was very encouraged that we punched the Fins in the mouth in the red zone. The first TD showed a great job by OJ Howard blasting a gaping hole for Barber. And this by a makeshift Oline! I’m stoked for sure. Our ‘fearsome foursome’? Not so much, save for JPP. Fins short game killed us all night long with slants and crossing routes. Ryan Smith should be shown the door today, he simply doesn’t know how to defend. Rookies Whitehead and Watson put up some good tape. Hargraves hurt again? I’m done with this flop. Jason Licht should suck it up and move on. The guy has been a disappointment and shows neither growth , or grit. If Mike Smith’s defense can’t turn in a dramatic improvement he should be canned. He has the horses now. He has run out of excuses. If I see our corners giving 10yd cushions again this year I will quit on the team I have loved and cheered for since John McKay called the first play back in ’76.

  20. orlbucfan Says:

    JimBuc2 Says:
    August 10th, 2018 at 9:39 am
    The game was not shown where I am, in GA, so I had to suffer Gene Deckerhoff’s consistently inaccurate babble. Wish the dude would retire.
    I tried all the streaming radio stations on the Bucs Radio List to get this broadcast. No success. What station did you listen to? Thanks in advance.

  21. JimBuc2 Says:

    Go to buccaneers.com and look for link to listen to the game.

  22. '74 Bucs fan Says:

    Its just one play, but the line blew the fins up! How many D lineman ended up on their a$$e$? I like to see that.