Key Values For Bucky Irving

May 1st, 2024

The Bucs picked the sixth running back off the board last week, University of Oregon sparkplug Bucky Irving in Round 4.

One seasoned college analyst, who often focuses on the Pac-12, thinks the Bucs got a steal.

Former Pac-12 quarterback Joel Klatt is well known for his work on FOX and in a pre-draft ranking of running backs, he had Irving fourth on his board. That was one spot ahead of Jaylen Wright out of Tennessee. In real life, Wright was the fifth running back picked, drafted five spots before Irving was grabbed by Tampa Bay.

Klatt said a tiebreaker for him in his running backs rankings was Wright having fumbling issues while Irving is a ball-security stud, especially for a smaller back. Irving had one fumble in 400+ college rushing attempts.

Interesting and perhaps a little strange for Tampa Bay, Klatt went on to discuss how Irving’s greatest strength is his hands in the passing game. Of course, the Bucs have Rachaad White, who statistically speaking has the best running back hands in football.

Per Klatt, Irving is a true do-it-all back capable of being a No. 1 running back.

Joe has gone back to 2022 video of the Los Angeles Rams to see how they used running back Cam Akers when current Bucs playcaller Liam Coen was a big part of the Rams’ offensive staff. From what Joe’s seen, it seems like Irving’s stop-and-start style and shiftiness is well suited to what Joe saw, perhaps more than White is.

Yes, Irving has a ton to prove. Joe’s not implying White should be ousted in the passing game. But Joe will note that Akers’ 9.0 yards per catch in 2022 was better than White’s average last year.

24 Responses to “Key Values For Bucky Irving”

  1. D-Rok Says:

    I think having RW and adding BI gives us an option for 2-back sets. Keep the defense guessing whether it’s run or pass, which alone should increase our yards per carry.

  2. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    I would love to see Bucky as #1 RB by mid season and White coming in on 3rd and late in the second half to spell Bucky. Let’s hope he is as good as he was in college.

  3. Boss Says:

    It would be nice to have a shifty back that finds hole. hard to be optimistic though as we’ve tried 1/2 dozen of them.

    give him the rock and find out i guess

  4. Scott Says:

    Keyshawn Vaughn 2.0…. JK

  5. James Willie Says:

    Even if he is used as a change of pace running back, it’s great to have an RB2 that is also a serious threat to catch the ball. Hope to hear some Chris Berman “Whoop!” highlights attached to Bucky. And, I hope he plays well enough to get a sponsorship deal with Buc-ee’s. That would be fun. . .

  6. Saskbucs Says:

    Based on our track record with RBs, I am going to reserve expectations until I see him in action. As far as 2 back sets, I hope they get more creative than we have seen the last couple years. Keep Bucky in the backfield and motion White out wide or into a slot position… should give Baker tasty pre snap reads and post snap options.

  7. Bucs Guy Says:

    I just want to see the Bucs picking up 3rd and 2 or 4th and 1. Didn’t draft a power RB, so I want to see how they got better in those area. I’m skeptical until they prove it.

  8. D-Rok Says:

    @Sask: That’s exactly what I’m hoping. BI seems like he’s gonna be good in the flat. Having a 2-back set, RW motions to slot…lots of options and opportunities, unlike last year (last several years).

  9. Pickgrin Says:

    With Mauch and Goedeke’s ongoing development and the addition of Barton – the Bucs OLine should absolutely be better this year. Especially at opening holes for the running backs.

    Jumping from 32nd in rushing per attempt to even 20th lets say – would mean a world of difference in the overall effectiveness of our offense and its ability to keep defenses guessing and score points.

    White is a better RB than his YPA thus far would indicate. I have little doubt that White will be over 4.0 yards average this year and might even push 1800 total yards if he gets anywhere close to the # of snaps he took in 2023.

    Adding a quick, shifty runner like Bucky for a somewhat different look will only help our cause – especially since he’s also a good receiver so you don’t lose much in that aspect either when White comes off the field.

    Hopefully Sean Tucker takes a big step forward this year and can be our “power back” (with 4.3 speed – LOL).

    Both Bucky and Tucker have a lot of work to do in pass protection improvement if either wants to see the field much this year.

    There’s no Barry Sanders or Walter Payton’s on the roster obviously – but I do like our running back room at this point all things and limited investment considered.

  10. OHBucFan Says:

    I’m a Jaylen Wright fan but no question, he had some fumbles early on. I liked how he learned to hold on to the ball though. Late in the season, everyone was going for the strip of the ball and man, he made them pay. All that, he’s not a Buc and I’m hoping that Bucky balls out!!

  11. Dew Says:

    Play White in the slot with Bucky in at RB.

  12. BA’s Red Pen Says:

    If this guy and the receiver have juice the Offense will be much better this season.

  13. SlyPirate Says:

    Dew Says:
    Play White in the slot with Bucky in at RB.


    This is such a good idea. I’d like to see this set introduced. Great for 1st downs. Get the MLB on White.

  14. Fred McNeil Says:

    I still hold out a modicum of hope for Sean Tucker. Last year was kinda star-crossed for him. Love his speed.

  15. Bucnjim Says:

    With a bruising RB when he’s in the game you know what’s coming. If you are subbing out White for Irving there are no limitations to the playbook

  16. Tucker Says:

    Bucky’s highlights are electric if his game translates to the NFL it’s hard not see him as rb1 eventually, his vision is so much better than whites, in my opinion, I wish white would play more of a bruising style he has the size for it but maybe not the contact balance for it.

  17. robclwtr Says:

    Yep… Sean Tucker is who I’m watching and pulling for

  18. JimBobBuc Says:

    Bucky’s vision is amazing. I went back to his highlights and froze his runs at a couple places trying to see how he could get by the defenders. He has quick short strides that allow him to cut without slowing down. White has much longer strides and stops with his jump cuts

    Tucker missed a lot of camp last year and he struggled in pass pro and adjusting to the speed of the NFL. Bucky will have the same challenges stepping up to the next level. Skip Peete needs to coach these guys up to get them on the field. Let’s go Skip!

  19. Mark A Swygert Says:

    We signed an UDFA RB from Arizona named D”J Williams. He’s listed at 225. Bit slow at 4.58 in the 40. Could he be the short yardage/goalline answer?

  20. heyjude Says:

    Cheering Bucky on! Bucky on the Bucs!

    I read that his dad died when he was only 2 years old. His dad had given him the nickname. It stuck with Irving because it reminded him of his dad and gives him comfort.

  21. stpetebucfan Says:

    Obviously White has no worries other than perhaps losing some touches..he NEEDS to lose some touches!! I say this not because I’m down on Rachaad, I’m not at all, I just don’t like seeing an RB run that many times. Derrick Henry is huge…Christian McCaffery tied with White for second most carries.

    17 games…perhaps soon to go to 18…TWO RB’s will become a necessity not a luxury. Welcome Bucky!!!

  22. BUCman Says:

    If you want to see what Bucky Irvin can do YouTube the full Oregon v Washington game from 11/12/2022. Be sure it is the 2022 game. Not just highlights but the full game. Wow, we got us a player! A bonus is Jalen McMillan is in the same game for Washington and also impresses! Well done Jason!

  23. BucsfaninOregon Says:

    I watched every Duck game that escaped the horrible TV contract (that was the main reason for the PAC 12 collapse), and he was a treat to watch. I replayed his carries many times just to see how elusive he was. If he is able to do some of that in the NFL you guys are going to freak out. Enjoy.

  24. Esteban85 Says:

    I can see it now, lining up with 2 back sets shifting Rachaad into the slot and having defenses on their heels. By all accounts it seems like we got a haul of much needed talent this draft. Time will tell but it’s got me excited for the preseason. Picks 1-4 could legitimately see quite a bit of playing time this season.