RONALD JONES II - RB TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS
Updated: Mar 6, 2021
In what was supposed to be one of the best games of the season, Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers got absolutely massacred by Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints. It was absolutely astounding how bad the Bucs looked in comparison to the Saints and as weird as it is to say this, the Jets looked way better than the Buccaneers this week. The coaching staff have shown that regardless of how stacked you can make your team, if you don’t have a proper game plan, then you are going to be embarrassed like the Bucs were on Sunday. Bruce Arians seems to be a pretty stubborn guy, so who knows how long it will be before he realizes that a team needs to change its scheme if they want to win a lot of games. He is acting like the team is his favorite jacket and he’ll wear it forever before cleaning it regardless of if it gets dirty or not. He needs someone to come along who will throw it in the wash every one to two weeks so that it stays fresh and nice.
One of the biggest factors of the Bucs game affected by this style of coaching is the backfield. That is why my sit ‘em player of the week is Ronald Jones II. Even before this, Jones II was trending down. Coming off his three-game stretch of 100+ rushing games, he has 100 yards exactly in his past three games combined and that is including both receiving and rushing yards. The snap percentage in the backfield is starting to favor Leonard Fournette, who is averaging a 2:1 share of the snap count compared to Jones. With one of the deepest receiving corps in the NFL right now with Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Rob Gronkowski and now Antonio Brown, I think the best days for the Bucs backfield is in the rearview mirror. The team will obviously run the ball because a team can’t get to playoffs by just passing (insert whatever team that has done that here), but that’s usually an exception to the rule. When they do run, it’s going to be Fournette a vast majority of the time.
They have a pretty favorable matchup against the Carolina Panthers who have allowed the fourth most fantasy points to the running back this season. However, the Panthers are coming off a game where they only allowed 30 total rushing yards and held the Kansas City Chiefs to 2.5 yards per carry. I know that is a bit skewed because the Chiefs had to abandon the run pretty early and Dr. Mahomes did his thing, but it is still noteworthy. Even if the Bucs come back and do well against the Panthers, I think it will mostly be through the air, so I don’t except a very productive game from Jones II this week.