Fournette “Enjoys” Role With Bucs

January 14th, 2021


One overlooked element of the Bucs’ win to advance in the playoffs was the play of running back Leonard Fournette.

Despite Fournette having less than 100 carries this year and being the backup to Ronald Jones, Fournette looked every bit the go-to running back many thought he would be when he was drafted out of LSU.

Not only was Fournette reading holes, he was firing through them and dodging defenders on the second level. Fournette ran for 93 yards on 19 carries and a touchdown.

This coming from a guy who wasn’t even part of the gameplan.

While appearing on “Late Hits” with co-hosts Alex Marvez and Bill Polian last night, heard exclusively on SiriusXM NFL Radio, Bucco Bruce Arians was asked by Marvez about Fournette’s strong game in Washington.

Bucco Bruce Arians: He didn’t know he was starting until we were out for warmups and RoJo couldn’t go. He’s a pro. He’s led his team in Jacksonville for all of those years but he ain’t the focal point of the offense [with the Bucs]. He kind of enjoys that role. And he did a great, great job with it.

Bill Polian: You know what though? It’s probably the fact that you are coaching him up. But I saw a lot of him at Jacksonville. He’s seeing things a heck of a lot better than he did in Jacksonville.

Arians: Yeah, these runs I think fit him perfect. That is the best I saw him run, making people miss in the ballgame the other night. Hopefully he can continue that.

This interests Joe on a couple of levels. First, was Arians saying Fournette “enjoys” his role with the Bucs? Most players want to play and Fournette is now a backup.

Does Fournette “enjoy” the fact that he is not getting beat to a pulp each game, thus extending his career and his window for collecting seven-figure checks?

Then Arians said the runs by Fournette were perfect for him. Is Arians saying (without saying) that Fournette can only excel running certain plays, and is that why RoJo is ahead of him on the depth chart?

This is all very interesting to Joe. But not as much as beating the Saints, no matter what play is called or who is toting the rock.

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21 Responses to “Fournette “Enjoys” Role With Bucs”

  1. Duthsty Rhothdes Says:

    Good DL he was running against in DC too; and Fournette looked fresh, going to need him in the run and screen game this week. He is a selfless blocker this entire year as he has stoned multiple blitzers in several games and protected Brady like an elite NFL pro

  2. Bculaw Says:

    Joe: I read Arians’ quote as saying that Fournette was not phased by the last minute notice that he was starting because he enjoys the role of being the lead, bell-cow back.

    In any event, he looked better in this game than in any prior game with the Bucs. He flashed speed and wiggle, and his vision was much improved. Not sure Rojo gets near 1000 yards if Fournette played like that throughout the season.

  3. Mitch Says:

    Yes Joe! You probably saw this already but Fournette had a press conference this week where mentioned he likes being fresh and that normally he carries over 300 times a year. He said it’s been humbling not being the focal point of the offense, and that it is ok because he chose Tampa over another team who wanted him to be the starter. He said he loves this team.

  4. 813bucboi Says:

    as long as fournette does his job, he’ll be fine….and thats what we need…

    dont feed the trolls…they’ll eat crow later!!!!

    GO BUCS!!!!

  5. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Fournette=Free Agent=Big Salary=Comp Pick

  6. Robert Says:

    Start him. Ride the hot hand and guy who can catch screens. Let Rojo bat cleanup.

    Fournette won’t be here next year anyway. Ride him while you can.

  7. Capt.Tim Says:

    Fournette has played well all year, but he played Great against Washington!
    He proved he is an NFL feature back.
    With Jones hurt, we are incredibly lucky to have a back as talented as
    Fournette, ready to carry the load.
    Well done, to our GM

    The Saints are the worst matchup for the Bucs, still in the NFC playoffs.
    If we can get past them- I believe we will get to the Superbowl.

  8. Defense Rules Says:

    Joe … “Is Arians saying (without saying) that Fournette can only excel running certain plays, and is that why RoJo is ahead of him on the depth chart?”

    That’s amazing Joe. You’re the unquestioned master at reading into things. MAYBE what BA meant (of course, ‘without saying’ it) was that that our OLine’s run-blocking was outstanding and that Fournette hit the holes beautifully THEN made defenders miss at the 2nd level to gain even more yards.

    But alas, that couldn’t be it. So we’ll go with “Fournette can only excel running certain plays” instead. Aahh yes, you never cease to amaze me.

  9. Bird Says:

    Was not the biggest fan of fournette as he seems to avoid contact for a big back. He does pretty good catching balls out of backfield

    But , Last week against washington he looked different. Ran hard. So kudos to him. We need all hands on deck this week

  10. Bird Says:


    Its ndog in disguise. His tell:

    “ive been here since the beginning”

    What a loser. He is afraid to post under original name since bucs started winning after claiming he never would change poster name
    He scurred

    If bucs lose , he will be back under ndog
    I mean what a puss. He is about as tough as a gummy bear.
    He aint a buc fan. Just a jamei whamei fan
    I mean he wants naughty time with old #3

  11. Tbbucs3 Says:

    This Bucs culture has changed so much and players are actually becoming proud to be a Buc which is something we haven’t seen much of in the last decade.

  12. Cannon Says:

    I’d imagine that Fournette loves this team because its got a very legit shot of landing him a SuperBowl ring. Plenty of motivation right there.

  13. gp Says:

    Tampabaybucfan Says:
    January 14th, 2021 at 9:31 am

    Fournette=Free Agent=Big Salary=Comp Pick



  14. Steve Gaudreau Says:

    With all the star power on this Bucs team, I have to say that it’s refreshing to see everyone is happy with the role they are playing. It could easily look like the dumpster fire that is happening in Brooklyn with the Nets.

  15. Conte Piscateli Says:

    If Fournette is forced to be the guy again this week it may actually help. Running against the Saints isn’t going to go well with any back, but having to roll with just Lenny helps to keep from absolutely telegraphing our play on running downs. Additionally it’s fairly clear he is our best blocking and receiving back. In this game, if he can give us enough tough 5 yard runs to set up play action and provide a reliable outlet on passing plays to keep us out of 3rd and long situations he will have done the job.

  16. Georger Says:

    Fournette=Free Agent=Big Salary=Comp Pick

    Brown=Free Agent=Big Salary=Comp Pick

  17. SlyPirate Says:

    Something to Watch – K. Vaughn
    Does Vaughn get into the game after his fumble or do his carries go to McCoy? We’ll get a sense of how much trust the staff has in Vaughn this week.

    My guess is KV sits because the staff believes the spotlight is too big for the rookie.

  18. teacherman777 Says:

    Fournette proved to be a greedy diva.

    He is finally running with fire. But his desire is just money.

    He just wants another paycheck.

    But thats fine. He can run hard for us. But hes proving to be a mercenary.

  19. PatsBucsfan4years Says:

    Still love that video of the two kids running to hug eachother that Fournettte sent to Tampa Brady when he signed with Bucs… He’s a baller and will run down hill all day against the Aints👍🏻

  20. Jmarkbuc Says:

    Fournette played well against WFT, but would still like to see Rojo dominate a game. I mean run so well the defense wants to quit.

  21. MDFree Says:

    Fournette ran the best he had all season last week in Washington. I think he can finally see the goal within reach and is now giving 100 % effort. Probably the reason why he was a healthy scratch weeks ago.