Ranking the Buffalo Bills deep group of running backs
By Avery Duncan
The Buffalo Bills are entering 2019 with a suddenly deep running back depth chart lined with promise, youthfulness, and historically great veterans alike.
What an off-season can do. Exiting 2018, the Buffalo Bills’ depth at running back was a major, major, (did I say major?) team need. Last season, the offense rotated through three subpar backs; a regressing LeSean McCoy, Chris Ivory, and Marcus Murphy. At times, it got so bad, that full back Patrick DiMarco had to play the position. Now, entering 2019, their depth at the position is a plus.
Only two running backs remain from last year’s team — LeSean McCoy and Marcus Murphy. Instead of driving on worn tires, general manager Brandon Beane opted to upgrade the position, in a big way. In free agency, the team added Frank Gore, T.J. Yeldon, and Senorise Perry. In addition, they added Christian Wade, a rugby star, from the NFL International Program and drafted the talented Devin Singletary.
The culmination of five additions should be a much needed, sustainable run-game to support quarterback Josh Allen. It also means, the Wyoming product probably won’t lead the team in rushing for a second straight season. Sarcasm aside, that’s entirely a positive, even if he can do it.
However, five fresh faces on-board come with cuts. As it currently stands, the team will have seven running backs and a fullback on the roster. The opening day 53-man squad won’t be able to say the same. At most, NFL teams carry five running backs into the season. To get to that number, the Bills will have to part ways with some players.
It’s worth noting that if Wade, the rugby star, doesn’t make the roster, he will be placed on the practice squad. As part of the NFL International Player Pathway Program, the addition of an international prospect won’t count towards a spot, turning the practice squad from a ten-man team to an 11-man one.