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Rachaad White wants to be player defenses “fear” and “respect” in new Tampa offense

Last October, quarterback Baker Mayfield said the Bucs are “kind of learning that we’re not going to be a run-first team.” This year, running back Rachaad White hopes to change that.

In a new offense run by Liam Coen, White aspires to become a player who keeps defensive coordinators up at night.

“If you are a guy in this league, you want to be a guy that is scouted for and respected,” White told reporters this week, via the team’s official website. “I have seen that and people just leaving me out. I saw that and wanted to make the most and make people fear me, make people respect me and to say when I come in the game, ‘It is not just 13, 14. [No. 1] you have to worry about, too.’”

Last year, White finished with 990 rushing yards and 549 receiving yards, for 1,539 yards from scrimmage. He scored nine total touchdowns. He added 166 yards from scrimmage in Tampa’s two playoff games. And it really kicked in for him down the stretch, including a four-game stretch with 366 rushing yards.

This year, Coen’s arrival could expand White’s role by incorporating McVay-style offensive principles aimed at showcasing White’s skills as both a runner and receiver.

White said he hopes to be a “bell cow” in the new offense, but he acknowledges the team has other great running backs.

White has one thing going for him — durability. He started 19 games in 2023. Not many running backs can stay healthy for a full season. If White can do it again, he might be able to unlock an even higher level of performance in the offense Coen is bringing to town.