Enamored since last season
I can’t help it, I have really liked Ronald Jones II since the moment I saw him running the football last season. I don’t know why it is that everyone doesn’t see it. Do I have a gift at spotting potential or his talents that others do not? Is it something much simpler like I’m imagining it, or am I just not quite right upstairs? I’ll go ahead and claim a little of both. I said at the end of last season, and coming into this one, that RoJo was going to burst out of his shell this season and be the guy Licht thought he was getting when he selected him out of USC in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft. We all know the story. Jones’ rookie season was a wasted one. Between Jones’ problems with the playbook, he also needed better blocking skills, and the inability of the then coaching staff to spot his potential and help work him through it decided that seasons outcome for him.
Arians’ arrival signals a new day for Jones
Enter Bruce Arians and staff, and it was a new day for the young Buccaneer. Jones would still encounter problems with his blocking skills last season but seemed to leave them behind by the final game of last season. Little did I know, Leonard Fournette, Ke’ Shawn Vaughn, and LeSean McCoy would be added to the roster. Arians, though, has held true to his philosophy that you must beat out the player on game days to get his job. Just as it took Jones five to six games to wrestle the job from Peyton Barber last year, so will it be this season. In week one, Jones held steady with an average rush of over 4 yards. I’m looking for Jones to break a few loose this week against a Panther’s team playing in our house. He should find the defensive road is a little easier this week than at New Orleans.
A good showing against Carolina needed
If Jones loses the starting job, It will be his own fault, as he will be afforded every opportunity to keep it. By all rights, this should be his year to stake his claim to be the long time starter here in Tampa. If he is the real deal, the presence of Fournette should not matter. Hope here is that the two can become a powerful one-two punch that defenses must account for. Here’s hoping Jones can bring it all together against the Panthers.