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Friday, Dec 19, 2014
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

You be the Bucs GM: Running back

Published:   |   Updated: March 6, 2014 at 06:30 AM

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Running back

This is one of the few spots where the Bucs feel comfortable with their personnel. The team has a Pro Bowl-caliber starter in Doug Martin, two promising backups in second-year pro Mike James and third-year pro Bobby Rainey, and a host of young prospects with the ability to move up the depth chart. The desire for more speed and the fact Martin (shoulder) and James (ankle) are coming off season-ending injuries could prompt the Bucs to add depth. At fullback, the team has been trying to negotiate a new deal with free agent fullback Erik Lorig for a few weeks now, but there’s a chance Lorig will hit the open market. If he does, the Bucs might need to look for a replacement in free agency.

Bucs under contract for 2014

Jeff Demps – Olympic sprinter certainly has speed the Bucs crave.

Mike James – Versatility has earned comparisons to Earnest Graham.

Doug Martin – Looking to bounce back from a tough sophomore season.

Lonnie Pryor – Could move into fullback role if Lorig is lost.

Bobby Rainey – Ran for 532 yards in final eight games last year.

Michael Smith – Another speed option if he can stay healthy.

Bucs potential free agents

FB Erik Lorig – Three-year starter might look for new home.

FB Spencer Larsen – Experienced veteran might be worth keeping.

RB Brian Leonard – Seldom-used but valuable short-yardage back.

NFL potential free agents

Knowshon Moreno, Broncos – He and Martin would give Bucs great 1-2 punch.

Donald Brown, Colts – Ran 102 times for 537 yards last year.

Rashad Jennings, Raiders – If Raiders let him slip away, Bucs might pounce.

LeGarrette Blount, Patriots – Had best year as rookie with Bucs in 2010.

Darren McFadden, Raiders – Inconsistent, but capable of making big plays.

The schedule

Today: Running back

Friday: Offensive line

Saturday: Defensive line

Sunday: Wide receiver/tight end

Monday: Defensive back

rcummings@tampatrib.com

(813) 259-7979

Twitter: @RCummingsTBO

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