What To Make Of The Bucs’ Run Game

August 28th, 2023

Regular JoeBucsFan readers might want to puke because they’ve read the following so much.

Joe is suspicious of the Bucs’ run game because the team didn’t upgrade at running back after cutting Playoff Lenny — the top rusher for a unit that was worst in the NFL last year.

Was Saturday night a sign Joe is way off base?

It’s very, very risky to bank on reads or tells from a preseason game. That’s one of many reasons why Joe thinks they are worthless. Both teams Saturday completely emptied their benches by the second quarter.

However, if results from a preseason game are some sort of crystal ball moment, what are fans to make of the Bucs running for 158 yards on 33 attempts Saturday night against the Crows?

It may demonstrate that new Bucs offensive coordinator Dave Canales knows what he is doing. It also may help demonstrate that his predecessor, SpongeBob Leftwich, had zero clue how to craft a running attack. Maybe both? (The Bucs averaged just 3.3 yards per carry last preseason.)

The last time the Bucs piled up 158 yards rushing in a preseason game, it was an identical tally at Jacksonville back in 2016.

For the 2016 season, the Bucs ranked 24th in the league in rushing, finsihed 9-7 and lost out a wild card playoff berth to the Lions.

31 Responses to “What To Make Of The Bucs’ Run Game”

  1. Lukrazs Says:

    As with the entire Offense, its kind of a surprise package.
    Leftwich definitely had no clue how craft a running attack though.
    It’s not just the O-Line if 99% of your running calls are the exact same play.

  2. Pruritus Ani Says:

    In a normal situation with anyone but Bowels as coach, I would say there is a chance…or at least hope..

  3. ModHairKen Says:

    Cutting Fournette and SpongeBob was the upgrade.

  4. Todd Says:

    SpongeBob with Flat Brim Hat was the poster child for:

    The Peter Principle states that, if you perform well in your job, you will likely be promoted to the next level of your organization’s hierarchy. You will continue to rise up the ladder until you reach the point where you can no longer perform well.

  5. Roc Says:

    It looks like the OLine is getting a better push in run game

    RB look like they are running hard

    However it is Preseason soooo
    I guess we will see

  6. Brandon Says:

    Having the read option concept a part of the running game will do wonders for the offense both running and passing. Not sure we ever ran any with Brady under center. We will definitely run better and pass from playaction this season.

  7. Fansince76 Says:

    I think the running game is a huge concern with no new talent except for Edmonds and Tucker. I thought Vaughn was going to step up for the No.2 spot but he has looked bad what’s up with that?.
    Until the offense actually runs the ball well in a real game we should keeping our fingers crossed big time.

  8. adam from ny Says:

    who the heck do you cut with the new guys looking really good…

    i want to keep tucker and brown…

    laird is gone in the numbers game…but he looks good too…

    so who gets cut…vaughn, edmonds?

    or do you keep white, edmonds, vaughn, tucker…and try to stash brown?

    we used to go receiver heavy with tommy b…but in a run heavy offensive scheme, we might as well keep one extra back and one less receiver………possibly

  9. Bucfan561 Says:

    Vaughn has the best vision out of all the rbs on the roster

  10. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Yes….we got rid of Fournette….he rushed for less than White….3.5 to White’s 3.7

  11. adam from ny Says:

    what if:

    we come flying out the gate this year and head into the bye week

    and we’re on the cover of sports illustrated with the title “break up the bucs”…

    and yaya diabi had like 6 sacks and joe sho is pacing nicely with 4


    it’s nice to be hopeful…this is the week of sheer hopefulness

  12. adam from ny Says:

    wow lenny is still a free agent…i just checked…

    no one has picked him up yet…

    so the league thinks he’s full on washed out

  13. Wild Bill Says:

    It was the preseason. A lot of yards gained against backup defenders.

  14. Salary Cap Hell Says:

    Canales is the difference… he is very underrated.

  15. Pewter Power Says:

    What I make of it. It looks way better than it did last preseason. Will it translate to regular season success we can only hope and that’s a scary word in football

  16. President Canales Says:

    Canales, Canales, Canales!

    Did I mention Canales.

    I’m buying all things Canales currently. Lets see if the gamble pays off.

  17. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Bucfan561 Says:
    August 28th, 2023 at 7:24 am
    Vaughn has the best vision out of all the rbs on the roster
    Not sure that he makes the team…How long have you been his agent?

  18. Cobraboy Says:

    I won’t buy into squat until the live bullets fly.

    Making a firm judgment based on PS games where only bubble players really give a spit is a fools’ errand.

    (PS: and Vaughn outside maybe three plays, has shown very little.)

  19. Mike shie Says:

    Can’t wait to see how it pans out for them this year. I for one am glad Lenny is gone. Ruth this new offense as long as our line holds up I’m kind of excited to see what these guys can do. I am an Edmonds fan already. He and White should make a good tandem.

  20. Lord Cornelius Says:

    24th in rushing would be a massive improvement of 500+ rushing yards vs last year lol

  21. Watch More ALL22 Before Commenting Says:

    The increased use of play-action alone will help the run game and vice-versus.

  22. rrsrq Says:

    Cheated out of a wildcard birth, bad flag by the refs on the KW II touchdown

  23. larrd Says:

    Lenny was running in mud so badly last year he made Vaughn look fast and hungry on the rare occasions he played a couple downs. The current crop makes Vaughn look pedestrian.

  24. Tap-out Says:

    Don’t know how you can come to that conclusion when you have different running backs and a different line in a whole new season! Coach Leftwitch took the job and was not win enough games to keep his job, now let’s see what this new OC can do!

  25. Rod Munch Says:

    Give the ball to Ronnie Brown and he’ll get you 2000 yards from scrimmage this year.

  26. 74 Bucs Fan Says:

    White, Tucker, and Brown – explosive! Edmonds may flash too with screens, etc. Vaughn does everything well, but nothing great. Lacks explosion and top end speed.

  27. TDTB2023 Says:

    I’ll take 9-7 through 16 games again. We probably win the division.


  28. steele Says:

    Who is the feature back in this great running attack? There isn’t one. It’s a commitee of spare parts.

    Unless Sean Tucker steps up (while improving his bad pass blocking). He’s undersized. Ronnie Brown? Even more undersized, lighter. “Scat”. Both Rachaad and Edmonds are glorified gadget better-at-pass catching types, duplications, and Rachaad is a long striding, slow to get going type who will get caught at the line, the way Lenny did. Ke Vaughn is a decent backup who is not a #1.

  29. garro Says:

    Still holding out for a veteran running back Joe?

    Come on man!

    Go Bucs!

  30. RustyRhinos Says:

    “It’s very, very risky to bank on reads or tells from a preseason game. That’s one of many reasons why Joe thinks they are worthless.”
    More “risky than any reads or tells” from just training camp competitions, or scripted scrimmages against other teams?
    Nothing like training to run your plans D & O (ST – Forget about it) against the same players. What happens when you do go up against another team? Is that when you want to realize oops, “X-Y-Z” player or scheme is not going to work against this type of O-D-ST?? We will then have to be in defensive mode against each NFL team we weekly face for the regular season. That sounds very “risky” and “reads” that we will not be very good, the season W&L record will “tell” me the same, or not. Only Father Time and Mother Nature can tell us the truth.


  31. RustyRhinos Says:

    Back in JBF Moderation again… Oh Joe, what could it have been, that I just typed, that set off your Blog algorithm again, Sounds like another coffee refill is at hand, While I am in JBF Moderation again…..