“That Kind Of Separates Him From The Normal Running Back”

December 20th, 2023

There’s nothing normal about Rachaad White.

He doesn’t have the typical running back stats and he’s not the typical running back. White’s game has been evolving all season — he’s been very good and very bad.

For the past four weeks, it’s been mostly good — and impactful. Certainly, it’s been improved.

Speaking on the Buccaneers Radio Network this week, head coach Todd Bowles acknolwedged why he has a unique player in his backfield.

It’s all about the passing game.

“He’s very elusive, you know, and he’s got a lot of moves in space,” Bowles began. “A lot of guys are one-cut to get open. … He can run normal routes. He’s got head fakes. He’s got body fakes. He’s got foot fakes. He can do a lot to get open. And when he gets open, he can run after the catch. That kind of separates him from the normal running back.”

White has 222 carries for 834 yards and 5 touchdowns this season. He’s been a workhorse, but not too productive. Among running backs with 100 or more carries, White ranks 29th in yards per carry.

At 3.8 yards per carry, White’s production is creeping up closer to the NFL average of about 4.3 yards per rush.

Through the air, however, White has been a beast, one of the best and most dangerious in the NFL out of the backfield.

Joe would love to see White get more touches in the passing game. Sure, the Bucs might be burning out White unknowingly with a massive workload, but that’s ok. They can worry about that next season.

Just win, baby.

29 Responses to ““That Kind Of Separates Him From The Normal Running Back””

  1. DS Says:

    That play from Canales was beautiful

  2. Lt. Dan Says:

    Ok Al Davis..but seriously. We can certainly upgrade from White in the upcoming draft. White would however make a nice RB2.

  3. Beeej Says:

    At this usage rate he’ll be burned out about when his contract ends, 2025

  4. Paratrooper Buc Says:

    The announcer for the Packers game made an error and called White a “wide receiver” then corrected himself but that seems to fit more than RB at times.

  5. 1#bucsfan Says:

    It’s a passing league the RB position is not what it use to be. I will take #1 and his ability to catch and run over pretty much any other RB in the NFL there’s a maybe 1 in JT with the colts but other than that he’s got better moves then even most WR. he’s consistently making people miss when he catches even broke a dudes ankles he had to leave the game. #1 is dangerous and n the passing game. I bet he gets better at running behind the LOS too.

  6. Weebs10 Says:

    It’s been fun to watch him and the line improve all year! He’s easy to cheer for!! Everytime he gets the ball with space it’s exciting

  7. Canabuc Says:

    White is top 4 in yards from Scrimmage this year. 2nd in receiving yards and
    Top 10 in rushing Yards and has same or better YPC than Henry or Etienne.
    He could have been above 4 YPC had he not sat down in late 4th quarter where he for sure had at least 20 yards more rushing each time to seal a game.

    More importantly his YPC has improved greatly from first half of season.

    Maybe we are just over critical.

  8. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    With defenses focusing on White, I’d like to see us use the TEs more.

  9. #99 the big fella Says:

    He certainly is exciting once he gets in open space!I have to admit I was ready to give up on this kid.. Definitely glad the coaches did not.

  10. Sam Says:

    One important factor not really being discussed is the run blocking by our O-line. It hasn’t been great. So sometimes it’s overly simplistic to say it’s all on White when looking at production and him ranking 29th. We start opening more gaps, he probably is more middle of the pack stats wise.

  11. Buc4evr Says:

    I always thought he was good, just couldn’t get good blocking. Put him in space and he can run away from CBs and Safeties. The guy could play WR in the slot.

  12. BigPoppaBuc Says:

    I’m loving how White’s game has grown. I would like it if they got a true running back in the off-season and make White into more of a Deebo Samuel type of weapon. I like White. Liked him last year and had high hopes. And this offense has basically revolved around him, so we go as he goes.

  13. Joe Says:

    We start opening more gaps, he probably is more middle of the pack stats wise.

    Holes have been there. Every game. Only recently has White been attacking them.

  14. bucs107 Says:

    He needs sometimes to hit the hole and not hesitate
    Beast in the passing game
    I don’t care about averages if he makes plays that produce points
    He might have 1500 yds from scrimmage that’s big play caliber

  15. Pewter power Says:

    Not bad for a slot receiver huh Joe? Considering how bad the offense as a whole has been you would expect low yards per carry but if he gets over 1000 then Bucs have something to work with.

  16. Daniel Z Says:

    I think the biggest difference of late with his running has been play calling. If you take away all the runs up the gut on 1st-and-10 that go for 1-2 yards, I’d bet he’s closer to 4.2+ per carry.

  17. steele Says:

    Rachaad is exactly what he has always been. A slow mo, long striding 3rd down back who does not hit the hole explosively or decisively (as Bucs107 correctly points out “hesitates”) (a Lenny tip toe-er), is not an all-down feature back, and needs to out in space. And Daniel Z is right: you have to call specific plays for him that hide his weaknesses. This roster is still missing the #1 feature back with power and north-south. Rachaad ain’t it.

  18. HC Grover Says:

    He will run and receive for over 200 yards v Jags. He will be Sanders and Czonka combined in 1. Bucs are Super Bowl Bound.

  19. David Says:

    I do not think he needs more touches in the passing game, he’s second in the NFL in running backs in that regard.
    He’s doing great, as the blocking gets better, his patience as a runner will pay off as well.

    The play design of the TD pass to him was fantastic (as was the execution)

  20. garro Says:

    No credibility Bowles Speak.

    Go Bucs!

  21. Red86 Says:

    He needs to be used like Kamara. We just need a couple of Mark Ingraham.

  22. Rod Munch Says:

    He’s got a 4-year contract, so use him like he has a 4-year contract. That’s how you should use every RB, then let someone else pay them and deal with managing their carries. Also, from the RB perspective, the only way any of them get paid is to have monster stats, so they should want every touch they can get.

    But White has not been up or down – the blocking and play calling has been up and down. White has been the same guy all season – he’s just getting better blocking and play calling as of late, and if he’d take those runs at the end of the games to the house, he’d be over 100 yards rushing each of the last 4 games, with another 110 yards receiving, and 5 total TDs. Even with him doing the ‘team’ nonsense and not housing those late runs for TDs, he’s still averaging 4.6 yards per carry over that stretch.

  23. teacherman777 Says:

    He’s also good at avoiding hard tackles.

    Anybody remember Davonta Freeman for the Falcons?

    He used to crush people. Initiate hard contact. He ran extremely physically.

    It destroyed his career.

    That kind of running style breaks a RB down.

    White is good at avoiding big hits

  24. Salary Cap Hell Says:

    We start opening more gaps, he probably is more middle of the pack stats wise.

    Holes have been there. Every game. Only recently has White been attacking them………

    Joe did you see him hit the hole at the end of the game to burn out the clock ?? No hesitation at all….. His greatest strength is in space ….

    We are lacking a true north south runner….

  25. 76 bucsfan46 Says:

    White is a back up RB at best. We need a true 1 RB

  26. Abucsfan Says:

    Joe you are delusional if think holes been there EVERY game. We literally just started getting push in the run game once we benched Matt Feiler.

    White is a good modern day running back. He could use someone to take the load off him, preferably a thumper.

  27. orlbucfan Says:

    White is proving with I’ve been hollering about: all these O players including the TEs can catch the ball. The problem is all the new additions especially greenhorn Canales. It sounds like he’s finally figuring out his players. R. White always had good hands. That 31 yard TD catch/run was beautiful. The team can do stuff like that if Canales calls it. Canales owes us fans 2 home games. The final 3 games would be beyond terrific! Go Bucs!!

  28. Glass Half Full Guy Says:

    I see plenty of holes that the o-line creates……from the comfort of my couch with a vantage point of an end zone camera angle, not with a wall of 300 pounders in my face trying to rip my head off.

    Same goes for “open receivers”. Pretty easy to see them from the stands or on the tube from a distance. Not so easy at field level with defenders less than 3 yards away from you.

    I think White runs to where he’s “supposed to run” and his hesitation is maybe because the hole hasn’t opened that he’s supposed to hit. I think the blocking has gotten better and I’m sure he’s been hearing it from the coaches to just hit the gap that’s called with force.

    Congrats to Mayfield for Offensive Player of the Week. His 5th one I think.

  29. garro Says:

    Hate to say this Joe but for the last 4 games White is at about 4.5 per carry. I know how much you enjoy busting his chops but for the last 4 he has really picked it up.

    Go Bucs!