Backfield woes have plagued the Bucs for a while now. Say what you will about the o-line and its defunct ability, you’re probably right. But one thing still remains: Peyton Barber has pretty much been a 1 man show as far as RBs are concerned. Now, Arians did note that the Bucs were “loaded” a few weeks ago in a few positions and RB was mentioned specifically. This was followed up by the signing of Andre Ellington not long after.
So this brings up the question: How loaded are we?
Again, the woes have been obvious, and the only consistent player has been Peyton Barber. Ronald Jones II seems to have a high ceiling, but whatever it was that happened this past season isn’t helping his case. So, while “loaded” could be appropriate, “proven” is not. So consistency is needed, and Mark Ingram is the perfect example.
Now, I wrote earlier in the offseason about how Mark Ingram needs to be a priority free agent, and I still stand behind it. His consistency and strength have been a huge asset to the New Orleans running game for a while, and his absence was felt during his suspension last year. Splitting snaps with featured back and human Swiss Army knife Alvin Kamara, Ingram still managed to 645 yards, a 4.7 average and 6 touchdowns on 138 attempts. That’s with a 4 game suspension, as well! So would Ingram be a welcomed case at an affordable rate in Tampa? I’d solidly say yes.