Bruce Arians Has An Order And Praise For Ke’Shawn Vaughn

June 10th, 2021

Ke’Shawn Vaughn is in a tough spot.

The second-year running back is playing behind a bellcow back who had the most efficient rushing season in team history, and he’s looking up at a 26-year-old former No. 4 overall pick who just dominated in the playoffs.

Yes, Joe’s talking about Ronald Jones and Leonard “Playoff Lenny” Fournette.

Today Bucco Bruce Arians was asked about competition for No. 1 running back this season and Arians sort of punted — even though he was just being honest.

Answers are coming in the summer, per Arians, and Vaughn has work to do outside his running backs corps.

“I think both those guys are starters in my mind,” Arians said of Fournette and RoJo. “Whoever goes out first doesn’t really matter to me, but that will be determined in camp. And, you know, Ke’Shawn has made a nice move but, you know, he has to be a better special teams player right now because of what’s in front of him. But I have all the confidence in the world in him as a runner and a receiver.”

Arians saying Vaughn “made a nice move” has Joe believing Vaughn impressed in mandatory minicamp this week and has found a place in Arians’ head. But that might not be good enough to get him on the field.

Vaughn is never going to beat out Giovani Bernard for a third-down back role, which means he must improve his second-rate special teams game just to be activated on game days.

It’s a tough spot for the young guy, but at least he’ll have preseason games this season to tote the rock — a lot — and make a stand for playing time and (hopefully) improve on special teams. He didn’t get that chance last season.

24 Responses to “Bruce Arians Has An Order And Praise For Ke’Shawn Vaughn”

  1. Casual Observer Says:

    As you say, he is in a tough spot. I like him and think the Bucs are glad to have him. Maybe next year is his chance to shine.

  2. Mike Says:

    Yeah, my bet is that he has come in more comfortable and confident in what he’s doing, showing shiftiness and vision and improved hands out of the backfield. He just has to get on the field and make plays however and wherever he can, which mostly sounds like it will need to be on Special Teams with maybe some spot duty during games where we are probably up comfortably. Still, if he is showing improvement, that is exciting, because we can see what happened with Rojo having a few seasons under his belt and getting better each year. Hopefully Vaughn is on a similar trajectory.

  3. BradyBucs Says:

    It’s amazing what fumbles can do to derail a RB’s career & life.

    Vaughn has showed flashes of great talent but when he fumbled the ball he really got put into Arians’ doghouse for most of the season.

  4. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Isn’t this fantastic?……..We are so loaded at RB we don’t need to play a 3rd round pick….and he can sit and develop with very low mileage….

    But… injury and all things change……glad we have him.

  5. Medicated Pete Says:

    Vaughn should be thankful his body isn’t being beat-up during the rookie contract + has a ring. He’ll get his chance somewhere w/ no mileage on the tires

  6. All lives matter Says:

    The way RB’s tend to go down with injuries in the regular season he won’t be relegated to special teams or warming the bench for long. Having a deep bench is a great problem to have. You wanna keep Vaughn happy in the meantime? Just remind him of his SB ring and his chance for another this season. I’m sure there’s a lot of backups wishing they had a legitimate chance like our guys.

  7. Gofortheface30 Says:

    “Flashes of great talent.” I mean…he had a couple of nice runs against the falcons, other than that – he has t seen the field and you guys dang sure haven’t watched practice. Old how you guys can make that determination that he’s this all world talent. Frankly if he was, then he’d be playing. Period point blank. And if he wants to dress on game day then he needs to be gunner on special teams. Other than that, Bernard is our exclusive 3rd down back. Rojo/Lenny will split. Pending injury, Vaughn will never play

  8. Jason Says:

    I still think Rojo and Lenny will alternate starts. 10 each works for me.

  9. Defense Rules Says:

    Think long term. Only ONE of our 4 RBs is under contract for 2022: Ke’Shawn Vaughn. When money gets tight next year, and it’s already tight, does anyone really think that we’ll bring back RoJo, Fournette AND Bernard? Nah, Vaughn will get his opportunities; maybe just not this year.

  10. Gofortheface30 Says:

    Defense rules – great point! I’m guessing One of them will be back. Clearly both Rojo and Lenny won’t be. If gio has a great yr and Tom Brady loves him – he may be too – and surely we will draft more of a “blue chip” kinda guy in the higher rounds next yr, so while Vaughn will get a better shot next yr, I guess we will see if he’s good enough to start or maybe even be a 3 down back

  11. SlyPirate Says:

    Vaughn is actually in a very good spot.

    Rojo, 4Net, GB are all free agents next year. Vaughn has a contract.

    Bide your time, work hard, and you’ll be playing next year.

  12. Natural Selection Says:

    BA laid it out in plain language that Vaughn needs to put focus on his special teams play. That is his ticket onto active rosters during the season. Any improvements as a back will only be injury protection for our 2 starters if he can’t become a starter on multiple teams units. I hope he’s working the sled some before camp.

  13. Noles Says:

    Go for the face

    He’s a 3rd pick out of SEC 1,000 yd rusher not like we picked Bo Jackson #1 & was a bust for us. Crappy take on Vaughn

    BTW Fournette #6 overall & RJ top of second

    Quit being a hater, he looks like a good player for 3rd

  14. Destinjohnny Says:

    Kid can 100% play and play well

  15. Infomeplease Says:

    KV if he works hard on special teams will get some reps like last year. Not many. If he can hang onto the ball and make those moments count, he may get more. We’ll see how that goes!

  16. Greg Says:

    My sense is KV learned a lot from last seasons experience. He figured out the SEC but found out the NFL was on a different level and ball security is paramount. Again my sense is he will dial that in and be an asset that will be huge for the RB position.

  17. David Says:

    He was a good receiver back at college and has shown a great burst. Unfortunately his chance is going to come when there’s an injury.

  18. SOEbuc Says:

    Ke’ is a very good pass blocker. Bucs ran the ball 30% of the time in 2020 folks. Regular season Peyton Barber Lenny splitting snaps with RoJo seriously pissed me off. I think if RoJo got 15-20 carries/game he could at least get 1,100+ yards. Maybe 1,200+.

  19. Bush's Coke Spoon Says:

    I still see that fumble as an excellent defensive play. Don’t understand that one play killing his opportunity.

  20. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Bucs were up 13-0 against the Bears when K Vaughn got rocked and fumbled. That play changed the whole game in a negative direction. It also as of right now has put K Vaughn’s career at the back of the line on the Bucs. He better like table scraps and play his but off on special teams. As for next year, who knows, Gio will still be here, and at least 1 of the 2 headed monster at Running Back. So Key needs to really step up in his limited role. On a stacked roster, it is all about a numbers game, and when you are #4 RB, it is a tough spot for him. We will all see how he handles it. I hope he does well, but we will see. GO BUCS!!!!

  21. German Buc Says:

    August, that hit on KV would have sent a normal human being to hospital – at least. I don’t think that fumble (originally ruled an incomplete pass) hinders his career. The fumble in the playoff game at Washington, well that’s a different story.

  22. Hope springs eternal Says:

    Even if the kid never becomes the bell cow injuries to starters makes a capable 3rd running back an important asset . And we won’t know how good he really is until he gets significant touches. This pre season may be his opportunity to either make or break his future. ROJO and 4F will get limited reps in the preseason. I hope he shows up both running and catching.

  23. Capt.Tim Says:

    More accountants.
    Did anyone believe that licht could resign the entire superbowl team?
    Then please quit trying to manage the Bucs books.
    Its boring reading.
    If we win the Superbowl this year, then they will again keep the major contributors.
    Any changes will be to improve the team.
    The Bucs proved that this year.
    And, If Brady stays healthy( and I do have alot of faith in Gabbert), I think we will win the Superbowl again this year.

    We have the greatest QB of all time, running the most talented Offense in NFL history.
    With a top 3 defense, full of talent.

    If KV is as talented as he appeared- he will get touches.
    Its really that simple. Arians will play the back thats killing it.

  24. Scott Lamb Says:

    I love the way that Brady has inspired this team play more inspired football