Ronald Jones II Still Top Dog in Bucs' Backfield
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have added multiple newcomers to their offensive backfield this offseason, but that doesn't mean Ronald Jones II is in danger of losing his spot atop the depth chart.
Despite the recent signing of veteran LeSean McCoy, and the selection of Ke'Shawn Vaughn in the third round of the 2020 NFL Draft, Bucs head coach Bruce Arians still has full confidence in Jones as Tampa Bay's workhorse.
“RoJo is the main guy," Arians said via video conference call Wednesday. "He’ll carry the load. All of those other guys are fighting for roles – [for] who goes in second when he gets tired, maybe who is the third-down guy. But they’re all fighting for a role and special teams will have a lot to do with that. LeSean – adding him – he’s a great veteran, he’s a very bright guy and he’s already coaching those guys and helping them out. He’ll find his niche easily.”
When asked what gives him that kind of confidence in Jones, who is heading into his third NFL season, Arians pointed out the improvements the former USC star has made since last offseason.
“Just the way he handled it," Arians said of Jones taking over the starting role from Peyton Barber last year. "He improved dramatically from last April to December. He has shown that he’s the guy. He is a guy with a lot of talent. He is excellent in the screen game. His run after catch is good. Just for him – how much can he expand it? But I have all the confidence in the world [in him]. He put a lot of time in working out and catching balls to improve his hands in the offseason and it’s showing up already.”
Jones will try to help balance an offense that led the NFL in passing yards last season, but struggled to consistently run the ball.