Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Leonard Fournette has emerged as the focal point of the team’s rushing attack, pushing former second-round pick Ronald Jones II to the bench. With the NFL trade deadline approaching, Jones could be one name moved by Nov. 2.
Multiple NFL teams are in need of depth at running back with the midway point of the season. The Indianapolis Colts are fielding trade offers for Marlon Mack, but general managers are also looking elsewhere.
NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reports that teams are monitoring Jones’s situation in Tampa Bay, hoping he becomes available.
With that in mind, let’s dive into four potential landing spots for an in-season trade.
Kansas City Chiefs land Ronald Jones
Bruce Arians is a Hall of Fame coach, but he’s also developed a reputation for giving players a short leash. Jones lost a fumble in Week 1 and played just 9% of the offensive snaps. After more mental mistakes made in Week 2, Arians has barely let Jones see the field. A trade to Kansas City might be just what the 5-foot-11 back needs.
Ronald Jones career stats: 1,864 rushing yards, 4.5 yards per carry, 15 touchdowns in 45 games
As we saw with Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Andy Reid is willing to be patient with young running backs. Unfortunately for Kansas City, CEH suffered an MCL sprain just as he started to get his confidence back. Expected to miss several more weeks, Jones could be a nice short- and long-term fit for the Chiefs.
He could take carries away from Darrel Williams immediately. Jones averaged 2.1 yards before contact in 2020, forced 31 missed tackles and finished with the third-highest yards after contact (3.65). Running behind Kansas City’s offensive line, Jones should have great success. If acquired, he would also allow the Chiefs to use Edwards-Helaire in the pass-catching role that his skills are suited for.
Baltimore Ravens add more talent at running back
The Baltimore Ravens running back depth chart was decimated before the season even kicked off. It’s a credit to the coaching staff, offensive line and quarterback Lamar Jackson that this team still ranks fourth in rushing yards per game (155.2). But betting on a 31-year-old Latavius Murray and the remnants of Devonta Freeman and Le’Veon Bell to stay healthy is asking a lot.