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Ronald Jones not viewed as the starter right now

The rookie will have to prove himself.

NCAA Football: Cotton Bowl-Ohio State vs Southern California Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

There is a lot of positive buzz surrounding running back Ronald Jones II for very many reasons. The 20-year-old from Fort Stewart, Georgia has the skillset to be an electrifying player at his position as well as becoming the team’s full time starter.

Many agree with the latter part of the above statement. Even Mike Tanier wrote about Jones, calling him an instant starter. But don’t hold your breath on that just yet.

General manager Jason Licht has high hopes for his second round running back. He’s just not ready to put him down as the starter over Peyton Barber this soon after selecting him 38th overall.

“I’d say it’s safe to assume [Ronald Jones] is going to make an impact,” Licht said via Ira Kaufman by way of Joe Bucs Fan. “We’re very happy with Peyton Barber. To be the starter and the lead dog right away, I can’t say that, but we’re very excited to have him.”

Barber showed late last season that he can undoubtedly carry the bulk of the load out of the backfield for the Buccaneers. We just don’t know if he can be that go-to guy on every down Tampa Bay needs.

If anything else, this is good for Jones. Work your way up the depth chart and not have so much pressure mounted to perform. The USC product will have enough time to prove his worthiness of being on top. He just has to be patient.