Barber finished 2017 as the Bucs’ lead back, although that was largely the result of attrition in their RB stable. He acquitted himself capably in that role, carrying 78 times for 335 yards (4.3 YPC) over the Bucs’ last five games. Tampa figures to give second-rounder Ronald Jones every chance to start, but Jones is by no means a flawless prospect.
It would be a major upset if Barber started over Jones. As well as Barber played late last year, he’s a former undrafted free agent with very ordinary athleticism. What we saw from Barber last year is probably as good as it gets.
Barber figures to be the top backup to Jones, but he’ll still have handcuff value at the very least.