Photos of the running backs on the Bucs' roster heading into training camp.
Players: Doug Martin, Bobby Rainey, Charles Sims, Dominique Brown, Mike James, (FB) Joey Iosefa, (FB) Javorskie Lane and (FB) Evan Rodriguez.
Coach: Tim Spencer
1. The "starting spot" is up for grabs.
In today's NFL, most teams have several runners split carries depending on the situation. The Bucs have three experienced backs, all of whom are expected to have a role within the team's offense. But who the "starter" is has yet to be determined. Doug Martin, Bobby Rainey and Charles Sims are the front-runners to earn that spot heading into training camp, but anything's possible.
2. Doug Martin had an excellent offseason.
Martin, the Bucs' most accomplished running back, returned to team facilities leaner and quicker, and certainly passed the eye test during spring workouts. He'll do most of his work when the pads come on, but looked sharp running the ball and hauled in a few nice catches, including a bomb from Jameis Winston during mini-camp.
3. Dominique Brown's making a case for himself.
There are eight running backs invited to camp, and not everybody can make the 53-man roster. Throughout the spring, Brown, an undrafted free agent out of Louisville, has performed well, and even appeared on special teams. For players on the roster bubble, special teams (Brown worked returning kicks) is key. If the Bucs like what they see from Brown in training camp, and he doesn't make the final roster, the team can place him on the practice squad.
4. Bobby Rainey's receiving skills make him a valuable asset.
Rainey caught 33 passes in 2014, the third-most of any Buccaneer behind Vincent Jackson and Mike Evans. He has the ability to win the starting spot, but will have an important role running routes out of the backfield regardless.
5. An interesting competition is brewing at fullback.
There's a bit of intrigue when looking at the fullbacks on the Bucs' roster. Jorvorskie Lane was the team's starter a year ago, but his two competitors in training camp, Joey Iosefa and Evan Rodriguez, are new to the position. Iosefa was a tailback in college while Rodriguez is listed at both fullback and tight end.