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Buccaneers lose ‘joystick’ Raymond Calais to Los Angeles Rams

In under 24-hours, Bucs’ 7th-Round pick went from Tampa to Los Angeles

NFL: AUG 25 Buccaneers Training Camp Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

When the Tampa Bay Buccaneers drafted Raymond Calais out of Louisiana in the seventh-round of the 2020 NFL Draft, it was easy to see where he might fit in.

The running back brought speed and big-play potential from his collegiate tape, and a much needed boost in special teams is where just about everyone dreamed he might be a hit.

After the pick was in, Arians met with the media and emphasized the speed and shifty nature of Calais, while also adding they expected the running back to more than just a fast guy.

“I think that Raymond is a smaller version, but much faster version of David Johnson,” Arians said. “He’s a heck of a little running back. I wouldn’t say he’s Tarik Cohen, but he’s kind of that style guy, that joystick type that can go out and play wide receiver and be a mismatch.”

However, since April the Bucs have also added LeSean McCoy and Leonard Fournette to the running backs room on top of fellow 2020 draft pick Ke’Shawn Vaughn and incumbent, Ronald Jones II.

The stacked backfield makes it hard for anyone to crack the depth chart, and when Tampa Bay announced Jaydon Mickens would be their return man, it was clear Calais was practice squad bound.

That is, until the Los Angeles Rams pulled a Lee Corso and poached Calais moving him to their active roster to start the season.

With the move, Calais will now hold a spot on the Rams’ 53-man roster for the first three weeks of the season. If he makes an early impact, the rookie running back could fulfill his dream of running on the same field as Tom Brady in Week 11 when Los Angeles comes to town to visit the Buccaneers.

According to the latest roster update on therams.com, Los Angeles has four other backs on their depth-chart, including Buccaneers fan favorites from recent drafts, Cam Akers and Darrell Henderson Jr.

As excited as the Buccaneers were about Calais’ potential, it’s good to see the young back getting an opportunity to be on an active roster sooner rather than later.