Bruce Arians: Bucs “Loaded” At Running Back

January 28th, 2019

If you listen to Bucco Bruce Arians’ very recent words about the Bucs offense, you can tell he thinks the quarterback and offensive line positions need work.

But he’s extremely bullish on the other positions, including running back, which is a bit of a surprise.

“There’s been issues with turnovers offensively, and some are technical, some are decisions. Those are things we have to correct with coaching,” Arians told CBS Sports Radio last week. “But as far as wide receivers, running backs, tight ends, skill players, oh my gosh, we’re loaded. We’ve gotta to work some up front. But there were times, you know, first game of the year they put up almost 50 in New Orleans. So there’s talent.”

Joe found that running backs chatter intriguing from the head coach.

Last week at the Pro Bowl, Joe talked to Cowboys defensive playcaller about the Bucs offense, Kris Richard, and without being asked, he spoke glowingly of Peyton Barber before any other Buccaneer. Joe knows Barber has many other fans in league circles, as well.

But forget about Barber for a moment, do Arians’ comments mean he believes in the college film of Ronald Jones?

Joe wouldn’t want to be a Buccaneers offensive lineman this offseason unless the last name is Marpet or Jensen.

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67 Responses to “Bruce Arians: Bucs “Loaded” At Running Back”

  1. tmaxcon Says:

    don’t over think joe Arians watched the tape of that minor league offensive line and realized they could have scored more points and had fewer penalties with blocking dummies at both tackles. scrap the entire oline room all of them and start over. even marpet and jensen joe are barely average

  2. 813bucboi Says:

    there are those words again…..coaching and talent…….

    great to hear bruce say they have to correct those things thru coaching…..under dirk, that statement wouldve read, we have to play better….lol….

    also great to hear bruce say “there’s talent”……some think the bucs have absolutely zero talent and every player on the roster should be cut…….

    barber is an nfl caliber RB without a question…..rojo got suck with lame duck coaches who didnt have the time or ability to develop players…..

    imo, bruce will have this team mentally prepared and young players will improvement under his coaching….


  3. 813bucboi Says:


  4. BetterBucFan Says:

    If Arians believes in Rojo he’s a bigger fool than I thought he was.

    Rojo had a cakewalk schedule in college- every time he went up against a good defensive team outside of conference he was SHUT DOWN!

  5. Dafenderman Says:

    Give the Bucs an Oline, then see what the running backs will do. Been screaming it all year. Hard to have a running game when you’re constantly hit in the backfield

  6. Bucsfanman Says:

    On Barber, I agree. He’s good enough. ROJO? I mean, there has been zero in terms of flashes.
    We’ll see.

  7. tbbucs3 Says:

    Ok so here are teams with worse Olines than the Bucs (according to PFF)
    – The Vikings (Dalvin Cook+ Murray)
    – Broncos (Lindsay)
    – Chargers (Melvin Gordon)
    – NY Giants (Saquan Barkley)

    Why do these teams find a way to run the ball effectively? Its because they have good running backs. Simple as that. If the Bucs had good running backs, the run game would improve.
    When are we gonna stop making excuses for the running backs on the Bucs and admit that they are not good enough?

  8. Phil Says:

    It would be nice if we signed Kareem Hunt then we would be more loaded & more loaded is better.

  9. Buc4evr Says:

    I’m not willing to get rid of Jones or Barber until we can get our O-line straightened out. Maybe its coaching or maybe its personnel, but until we can effectively run block there is no way we can judge the running back position. No running back can excel with the defense constantly in our backfield.

  10. Lord Cornelius Says:

    He seemed to be talking weapons in general including WR/TE so I’d say we’re loaded from that angle. I still hope we draft a RB that’s a great WR in the top 3-4 rounds

    Dream scenario:

    R1-trade back and get another 2 (7-10 range) : Ed Oliver – DT
    R2-Josh Jacobs – RB
    R2- OG/DE
    R3- DE/OG
    R4- OT

    use FA to fill other needs/depth and dump mccoy/whoever salry as needed to do so

  11. Owlykat Says:

    If Arians plans to keep Rogers that doesn’t bode well. We need a larger third down back who can really block to help Jameis escape a blitz and can catch the ball and break tackles. Perhaps 44 could be developed for that role but we need another RB in case BA cannot develop Jones like he thinks he can. BA is right about our pathetic OL neglected on Warhop’s watch. Hope our new OL Coach with some additional OL additions in the draft can turn our OL around! I would love to hear from our DC what he thinks of our defensive personnel after he studies their film.

  12. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Every day I realize there is another player we don’t have signed……how are we going to stretch our cap space to accommodate.

    LT or Donovan Smith
    RB or Peytpn Barber
    MLB or Kwon Alexander
    WR or Adam Humphries
    K or Cairo Santos
    Backup QB or Ryan Fitzpatrick
    CB (not Brent Grimes)
    plus….we have the entire 2019 draft class to sign….

    Squeeze all that out of $16mil….

  13. Bucs Fan #7423 Says:

    Fix the O-line and the running game will fix itself

    Peyton Barber isn’t great at one thing except being average across the board, trucking, making defenders miss tackles, run vision, pass catching, run blocking etc

    We won’t lead the league in rushing but we can at least win games by running the football in critical situations

  14. unbelievable Says:

    Been screaming about poor o-line play for 3 years now.

    Good to see BA knows what’s up.

  15. Bucs Fan #7423 Says:

    tbbucs3 Says:
    January 28th, 2019 at 1:17 pm
    Ok so here are teams with worse Olines than the Bucs (according to PFF)
    Yeah but are those rankings just for run blocking or for overall??

    Huge difference between run blocking and pass blocking

    Our O line is OK pass block but we suck at run blocking

  16. miken Says:

    We are loaded at rb…. we have a franchise qb… what we he say next? our D is as good as the Dungy era D?

  17. Jean Lafitte Says:

    There in lies the root of our running woes. The big uglies aren’t creating any creases. At least not with any consistency. They don’t get their pad levels low and drive with their legs. I bet Vita Vea would make a great RG. He’s got tree trunks for legs.

  18. The Real Malloy Says:

    Does anyone ever get tired of TMAX or is it just me? Theres no way this guy is a Bucs fan. He’s gotta some troll that likes the Saints or something.

  19. Defense Rules Says:

    @813bucboi … “under dirk, that statement wouldve read, we have to play better….lol…. also great to hear bruce say “there’s talent”…”

    Wow bucboi, there’s a LOT of ‘lol’s in there. What exactly did you expect Coach Arians to say? “Oh woe is me. Our entire team is totally bereft of talent. Woe is me.” Uhhh, right now BA’s being very positive … as any new coach would … but soon enough folks will see another side of him when he & his coaching staff finish evaluating this roster.

    And we’ve had the conversation about Dirk before on JBF I believe. Coaches don’t tackle, coaches don’t commit penalties, coaches don’t fumble or throw INTs, coaches don’t blow assignments, coaches don’t quit on plays. And there’s a reason why they don’t: because they’re not on the field when plays are executed. But players are bucboi, and folks need to start holding players ACCOUNTABLE for poor play. Winning in today’s NFL takes a combination of coaching AND talent.

  20. down in the dirt Doug Says:

    Thought it was a crime that Rojo didn’t get to carry some of the load when we reached the last few meaningless games.How the hell do we know what we have in him.Seems like BA may be thinking that all is not lost with our running squad.

  21. Anonymous Says:

    miken Says:
    “we have a franchise qb.”


    Well said, miken.
    Agreed. We do.

  22. Owlykat Says:

    Rd 1 Trade Back for Bama or Mississippi’s OT and Ed Oliver (If can’t get GMC to restructure and we will play mostly our 4 man front)
    Rd 2 Charles Omenihu DE Texas
    Rd 3 Iman Marshall CB USC
    Rd 4 Andre Dillard RT or Andrew Pollard RB
    Rd 5-7 BPA who can also play Special Teams

  23. Bruce Blahak Says:

    coaching red flag! …check him for dementia, we have Barber and that’s it!

  24. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    If Arian improves our running game as a top ten running team without any new running backs, then he truly is a football god. I agree, our Olines sucks at run blocking. It is hard to judge if Rojo is the real deal with such an aweful line, especially on the right side and at left tackle.

  25. Not there yet Says:

    Have to have talent to put up the numbers and yards the team produced. Saying this team isn’t talented is just the excuse people want to give Dirk Koetter. Winston did more his first two years than he did the last two, coaching is the major issue with this team and we talk a lot about him being able to fix Winston but having coached o lines I’m hoping that is where he’ll make the biggest impact

  26. 813bucboi Says:


    BA is a straight shooter…..he’s already called out smitty for having a “passive defense”…..

    if BA felt this team lacked talent he wouldve came out and said it or not even taken the job for that matter….

    coaches dont play but they develop players and put players in position to be successful…..something dirk and smitty failed to do…..players are held accountable by fans and media daily……folks like you and @rhealist seem to always point the figure at the players…..

    if players are being coached poorly, they’ll play poorly…..simple as that….


  27. 813bucboi Says:

    Not there yet Says:
    January 28th, 2019 at 2:37 pm
    Have to have talent to put up the numbers and yards the team produced. Saying this team isn’t talented is just the excuse people want to give Dirk Koetter.

    BINGO!!!!!!!…..i totally agree!!!!!!!


  28. Dubcity06 Says:

    Red flag alert

  29. Bucsfanman Says:

    unbelievable- How DARE you sir! We all know that it’s Doug Martin’s fault!
    OL issues?! Man, please! 🙂

  30. Dubcity06 Says:

    OL and RB is priority 1 and 2

  31. Jmarkbuc Says:

    BA is just instilling his Mantra…

    Loyalty Trust Respect. This time of year he’s not gonna rip these guys before he’s even met most of them. Kudos to him for not negatively playing it out in the media.

    There will be plenty of time to discern who has talent or not during OTA’s..I believe he will do that.

  32. The Buc Realist Says:

    I have no problem with the coach pumping up the value of any player on the roster, It could end up getting more in a possible trade!!!!! The draft and free-agency will reveal the truth!!!!!!!

    If they can churn the roster and turn over correctly, will be the only possible way for a winning season!!!! if that happens!!!!! if it does then #arians_nation!!!

    The 2019 season will reveal answers to the sheep that the “real” fans already know!!!!!!!

    GO Bucs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  33. tmaxcon Says:

    The Real Malloy

    Truth sucks…. you must really hate that i am always right. Not a single meaningful win in 16 years sorry the only fools are the ones with optimism and hope.

  34. stpetebucsfan Says:


    Is your 16 million what’s in the pot right now?

    Add the projected ten million the cap is expected to jump this year…26 million…add in GMAC’S and DJAX and Grimes and you add another 30 million for a total of 56 million.

    Of course that presumes that BA is willing to part with those three…one is a no brainer…an old malcontent well past his prime but that’ only 7 mil…GMAC has value as does DJAX but are they worth the major salary dollars they eat up?

    That’s a debate that goes on daily here at JBF.

    IMHO…DJAX is not…GMAC needs to have his salary cut…I like him as a player but he’s simply not worth 13 million.

  35. Bobby M. Says:

    Frankly we don’t know how good Barber is because the line is awful. And Jenkins isn’t anything special…ESPECIALLY for what he’s getting paid. He’s mean/nasty….but terribly inconsistent. Guys like Jenkins are supposed to make what Dotson is making….Serviceable but not great with an attitude. We paid him premier center money and he’s far from that. Fundamentally he might be the 3rd best linemen of that group.

  36. Defense Rules Says:

    @813bucboi … “if BA felt this team lacked talent he wouldve came out and said it or not even taken the job for that matter.” Coach Arians hasn’t made a single change … YET. Standby bucboi, there are plenty of personnel changes on the way. Since you obviously don’t believe that, compare the Bucs roster that finished the year with the roster of any of the teams that made the playoffs this year. Never denied that the Bucs have talent; we just don’t have enough of it. We’re not a very well-built TEAM IOW.

  37. Jimmy Says:

    Who knows? Maybe if they can fix the oline, Barber might be a top back.

  38. D-Rome Says:

    Does anyone ever get tired of TMAX or is it just me? Theres no way this guy is a Bucs fan. He’s gotta some troll that likes the Saints or something.

    tmaxcon is definitely a Bucs fan. I used to not stand his comments but over time I’ve grown to appreciate them, especially because they’re over the top. He believes the single best decision this franchise has made over the past 25 years is drafting Warren Sapp. If you look at the kind of game wrecker he was and how he elevated the play of everyone around him on defense, it’s hard to argue. There is certainly a point to be made that without Sapp, Brooks may not even be a Hall of Famer. Lynch and Barber may have been lost in irrelevancy like so many other good Bucs players.

  39. Pickgrin Says:

    Coach was talking about the offensive “weapons” as a whole – and just happened to include the RBs as he was listing positions.

    Barber won’t get you many 20 and 30+ yard runs per year – but he’ll get you a solid 1000 or 1100 yards rushing if he is your main RB on 1st and 2nd down for 16 games. That’s WITH solid run blocking which we haven’t seen since Logan Mankins took his BBQ set and went home…

    Its obvious the Bucs need more flash at RB. Rojo may or may not be able to provide that – but I can pretty much guarantee the plan is not to stand pat with what we currently have. Bucs will either draft a quick runner who is a good pass catcher in the 3rd or 4th round – or find someone in FA who fits that bill. My guess considering the cap situation is the former.

  40. 813bucboi Says:


    no doubt players will move….some will come…some will go….

    to claim BA has to “overturn”,”flip” or “gut” the roster because we “have no talent” is absurd…..

    BA will win with most of the same players that are currently on the roster… has a solid foundation and talent…we just lacked solid coaching and development…..

    stay tuned…..


  41. Defense Rules Says:

    StPete … According to the Bucs have $12,193,360 in CAP space, and $94,515 in dead money. That ranks us 29th out of 32 teams. Supposedly that’s up-to-date as of 26 January and includes the projected CAP rise to $191 mil (NFL still hasn’t confirmed that number though far as I can see). That’ll all come clear soon enough, but the bottom line remains that we’re near the bottom of the NFL this year in terms of CAP space UNLESS we get some to restructure or trade/release some high-salary players.

  42. Defense Rules Says:

    813bucboi … If you’re gonna quote other commenters, please do it FACTUALLY. Never said Bucs “have no talent” (like you quoted me as saying). Did say “Never denied that the Bucs have talent; we just don’t have enough of it. We’re not a very well-built TEAM IOW.” Sorta kinda a difference.

  43. StoutGospel Says:

    Kareem Hunt.

    Or, in the very likely case as Bucs often do, we can watch him be lured/signed away by the Eagles or Bears.

  44. diggler Says:

    If Bucco Bruce stays with Barber and Rojo and they produce, that will be the death knell for Koetter’s respectability IMO.

  45. Pickgrin Says:

    And speaking of salary cap…

    SPBF – optimism is always a good quality – but you can’t wish the Buccaneers into having more money available than they do….

    OTC says the Bucs have just over $12M available – Spotrac says the Bucs have just under $7M available. I tend to go with Spotrac’s #s over OTC’s – but either way – we don’t have very much to work with.

    Need to sign Kwon for about $5-7M or pay/draft another MLB. Need to sign D. Smith for about $7-9M or pay/draft another LT. Need to sign Humphries about $5-6M or pay/draft another slot receiver. Santos/another kicker – $2M. Fitz or another vet back-up QB $3-5M.

    Those absolute needs alone constitute a minimum of $25M.

    Oh and btw – the $7-12M that we are “over” our cap # as of right now. It DOES include an estimate of what the NFL’s 2019’s cap ceiling increase will be – but it does NOT include the approximately $9M that will be needed to sign all of our rookies this year.

    Bucs are not in good shape cap wise at all as of this moment.

    But there are a bunch of players who can be cut with no penalty to create cap space – which is exactly what we will see.

    DJax – $10M, Curry – $8M, Allen – $5M, Unrein – $3M, Anger $3M – those are easy cuts IMO and free up $29M which gives just a tad of breathing space considering the minimum expenses needed as outlined above… You could throw Gholston into that group and add another $3.75M perhaps.

    Beyond that the Bucs could trade/cut McCoy and save $13M. Trade/cut LD54 and save $9.75M or Trade/cut Brate and save $7M. But I would NOT personally recommend getting rid of any of those 3 very good players unless absolutely necessary.

  46. tmaxcon Says:


    optimists hold out for government handouts and fairytales… the realists accept they must earn everything

  47. catcard202 Says:

    Didn’t read BA’s comments to mean the RB corp is loaded…He’s talking skilled positions, in general…Which is factual. (WR/TE pcs are premium – RB is meh)

    IMO, Bucs RB depth is dreadful…Barber (RFA), Rodgers(UFA), RoJo 2.0 & Wilson make up one of the worst RB corps in the league.

    Barber should be resigned, unless it just doesn’t make sense…But TB still needs to make serious run at Kareem Hunt or target a 3rd Rd RB in the draft.

    (Just can’t see Licht signing LeVeon Bell @ $15M/yr… Too much coin/yr, even though he’s a stallion. But it isn’t ludicrus to see the FO do something like tha

    I’d be more than ecstatic if we were looking at a 2019 Bucs RB corp of Hunt, Barber, RoJo 2.0 + draft pick…(2nd-3rd Rd options- Benny Snell / David Montgomery…4th-5th: Dexter Williams / Bryce Love / Jalin Moore)

    Not sold on Wilson as a RB…Return Specialist, sure…Someone to swing out in the flat & toss the rock, sure…But will never be more than a 3-5 touches a game, kind of guy.

  48. Hodad Says:

    Unfortunately tmax often speaks the truth, and the truth sometimes hurts. Tmax is not making up the fact that our beloved Bucs have given us back, to back 5-11 seasons. All are so called stars have not produced a winning record in two years. Coaching has been poor, but the talent on this roster is way over rated by Buc fans. McCoy, David have been losers no matter who’s coached them. McCoy has had six coaches in nine years, there comes a point where you have to look at the player. Marpet is hailed as a blocking God, but the reality is he’s on his 3rd line position in four years, yet hasn’t come close to sniffing a pro bowl, or being an all pro. Q. Nelson became both in his rookie season by turning the Colts O line around. Don’t shoot the messenger, the Bucs have sucked for years now.

  49. Hodad Says:

    Unfortunately tmax often speaks the truth, and the truth sometimes hurts. You don’t go back, to back 5-11 seasons because of bad coaching alone. Our so called star players have produced loss, after loss. Marpet is hailed by Buc fans as a blocking God, yet he’s on his 3rd line position in four years, and hasn’t come close to making a pro bowl, or an all pro. Only in the mind of Buc fans. It only took Q. Nelson his rookie season to become both, he turned around his Colt O line, that’s what real talent looks like. Don’t shoot the messenger, tmax, let’s keep it real, you can be a fan, but that doesn’t mean the Bucs don’t suck.

  50. cspann Says:

    we need to sign tevin coleman. he is a lot like david johnson. problem is we need more cap space to make that move. see you later DJax and McCoy!

  51. The Real Malloy Says:


    Fair enough, but dropping 5 new starters in on the OL is NOT the answer with the talent we have at the skill positions. If we keep D Smith, then leave the left said alone and we have some continuity with the C_G_T on that side. I DEFINITELY agree that the right side needs to be rebuilt, but with a road grader at RG and an upgrade to Dot, I think we have the makings of a pretty damn good O Line.

  52. BucEmUp 7 Says:

    well we still havent seen Barber get the chance to be a true bell cow. Rodgers and others ate into a lot of his work. Poor defense kills the running game as well. Arians will draw up much more creative screens and getting his backs into space as well….ROJO!!!

  53. Jon Gruden Says:

    I tell you what man. If I had that Peyton Barber on my team…oh man! I’d run juicy fruit trap belly cat rub on two every other snap. You gotta love it man, pound the rock. And Jimminy Christmas, don’t hold and get a penalty Donovan Smith!

  54. firethecannons Says:

    start with getting kareem hunt

  55. JabooBuc Says:

    Pretty sure he meant to say he wants to get loaded when he looks at our RBs. Obvious mistake.

  56. tbbucs3 Says:

    Man if ROJO can get his yard per carry up to 2.0 that would be lethal. Look out NFL.

  57. BucsFan420 Says:

    Barber is a whole lot better than most of you give him credit for. I can see there aren’t many of you who are good at talent evaluation. This man is a stud waiting to happen. Load the O-Line like they have loaded the rest of the Offense, and you will see this kid is above average all day long.

  58. Dave Says:

    Really reaching here for controversy Joe.
    He did not say the running backs were overflowing with talent or anything remotely close to that. He lumped in all skill positions and said the Bucs are loaded, and they are. Unfortunately they only have one running back in Peyton Barber

  59. Joeypoppems Says:

    Seems like he meant skill positions in general are loaded not rb specifically.

    Pay Tevin Coleman.

  60. Morgus the Magnificent Says:

    Loaded at RB? Uhhhh…….

  61. StoutGospel Says:

    It’s a fair and good point @Dave…

    That does accurately seem to be what Arians actually articulated…

    Kareem Hunt.

  62. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Pre-Draft Coach Speak.

    This time of year, we have to take everything Bucs staff says with a grain of salt. I think this is the year Joe 2 gets his wish. RB in round one.

  63. Arian Nation Says:

    Thank you, Owlycat. “Rd 2 Charles Omenihu DE Texas”

    Saw that beast in the Senior Bowl practices and he was man among the boys.

    Imagine trading back from #5 and getting Ed Oliver and Omenihu?

    That would be enough to make Drew Brees consider retirement

    Charles would be known as “THE OMEN!”

    Kind of sends a chill down your spine.

  64. Owlykat Says:

    The LT position is the most critical on the OL because he has to protect the QB’s blind side to stop strips and sacks. Build up just your right side and leave Turnstyle D. Smith at LT and eating up 16 million of your cap space is pure lunacy! And NO we don’t need a RB with our 1st round pick. We must get a first round LT. But I am not worried about it, because BA has watched the film and knows what he has to do to fix the OL and he has a competent OL Coach to develop our backups so we can keep going strong if we have some injuries. Thank goodness Warhop and Koetter are gone!!! Open some nice holes and Jones can take it to the house just like he did at USC. Use a pulling LG and a good blocking FB or TE (and there is a good one from the Sr. Bowl who can be had with a low draft pick and Jones will be off to the races) and just get a backup RB with the same weight and speed as Barber (Nr. 44 could be developed to be that backup) and get rid of Rogers. We could have a great running game to take pressure off Jameis, control the clock, rest our Defense, and preserve wins in the 4th quarter, and we can have a Playoff Team next year!

  65. Owlykat Says:

    BA is also smart enough to figure out he has two tall TEs who can both block and catch passes in OJ Howard and Anthony Auclair, and playing together at the same time they can create mismatches all over the field. Moreover they can chip block if a DE is getting the best of either of our young tackles this year. Moreover, they can block downfield in the running game like New England does. That can help Jones go all the way once he gets through the hole by one or two TEs knocking CBs and Safeties to the ground! A Great Head Coach with good position Coaches can make a huge difference in transforming our losing culture to a winning culture.

  66. ToesOnTheLine!!! Says:

    Why so much Tevin Coleman love here? The guy had his chance last season in Atlanta to be “the man” when Freeman landed on IR, but instead he seemed like a guy who’d break one long one per game to pad his stats but never really be a dominant rusher during the game. Heck it seemed like the Falcons were using their 4th round rookie (Ito Smith) more in the red zone, so I’m not sure what role Coleman would excel at beyond another body at RB? Pass and save the money is my take anyway.

  67. Joe Says:

    Why so much Tevin Coleman love here?

    Help yourself while hurting a division foe. Not to mention, have you seen the Bucs running backs, you know, run?