Derrick Ward thinks Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back rotation will work
Running back Derrick Ward said the Tampa Bay Buccaneers plan for using their running backs - the 2-2-1 format- is very similar to the one the Giants were so successful in last season, when they had two 1,000 yard rushers.
And Ward thinks it'll work out well here.
"I wouldn't see why not," Ward said. "It'll keep us all fresh throughout the year, and hopefully we can keep that freshness throughout and make big plays. The defenses won't know what to adjust for, between me and Earnest (Graham) and Cadillac. It should work out just fine."
Bucs coach Raheem Morris has said the plan for the preseason (and if it works, the regular season, too) is to have the starting running back play two series, followed by another back taking the next two series, with the third back playing a single series. Then it starts all over again. The running back who has the single series would be used for situational plays fitting to his strengths (short yardage, etc).
Ward said that system is "pretty much the same thing" as the rotation he had with the Giants last season, when him, Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw were in the backfield. Ward rushed for 1,025 yards andd Jacobs had 1,089, forming just the fourth pair of running back tandems to rush for more than 1,000 yards in the same season in NFL history.
"We did series, too, like (Jacobs) would get two series, I'd get two series, and Ahmad would come in and rotate throughout like that," Ward said. "At the end of the games, I could go out and do a tap dance or something, I was so fresh."
-- JOE SMITH