James signed with the Detroit earlier this week in wake of injuries to the team's running back stable and could be promoted to the active roster as soon as this weekend. With Ameer Abdullah (foot) on injured reserve and Dwayne Washington (ankle) unable to practice all week, Theo Riddick and Zach Zenner embody Detroit's lone healthy options at the position, which could allow James to make his debut this weekend as a depth option. The 25-year-old James last played in 2014 for the Buccaneers and boasts 332 rushing yards on 79 career attempts.
Following a three-year stint in Tampa Bay, the Bucs decided to part ways with James due to a lingering injury he can't seem to overcome. In the wake of his release, the team promoted rookie Peyton Barber from the practice squad and plucked Jacquizz Rodgers off the free agent market.
It's unclear at this stage what James' injury issue is, but with the move, the Bucs are down to two running backs on their 53-man roster, a depth issue that will no doubt be addressed in short order by either a practice squad promotion or free agent signing.
The fourth-year back beat out undrafted rookies Peyton Barber and Russell Hansbrough for the job despite not having played in the final preseason game on Wednesday. James brings some experience as a young veteran, having tallied 79 carries over his first two seasons before not receiving a regular-season tote in the 2015 campaign. With Charles Sims often serving as a third-down, pass-catching back and potentially splitting out at receiver at times this coming season, it's conceivable that James could spell bell-cow back Doug Martin for a series or two on a weekly basis in 2016.
James gained 17 yards on six carries and secured both of his targets for 11 yards and a touchdown in Saturday's 27-21 preseason victory over the Jaguars.
The four-year pro is locked in a tight battle with both Peyton Barber and Storm Johnson for a backup running back job, and was able to find an end zone on a night when both of those players also made positive impressions. James secured a five-yard flip from Mike Glennon in the second quarter for a score, but found tough sledding on the ground for the second straight week. The former Hurricane has only 20 yards on 13 carries over the first pair of preseason contests, but has managed three receptions for 37 yards and Saturday's touchdown. The competition for a spot behind Doug Martin and Charles Sims figures to continue straight through the fourth and final preseason contest.
|8||10/30/16||@ HOU||1:00 pm|
|9||11/6/16||@ MIN||1:00 pm|
|Bye: Week 10|
|13||12/4/16||@ NO||1:00 pm|
|15||12/18/16||@ NYG||1:00 pm|
|16||12/26/16||@ DAL||8:30 pm|
|2013||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||8||3||60||295||4.9||24||0||2||14|
|2014||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||11||0||19||37||1.9||9||0||0||4|
|2015||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||0||0||0||0||---||0||0||0||0|
|2016||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||0||0||0||0||---||0||0||0||0|
|2013||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||8||3||10||43||4.3||20||0||1||0||1|
|2014||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||11||0||1||-5||-5.0||-5||0||0||0||0|
|2015||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||0||0||0||0||---||0||0||0||0||0|
|2016||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||0||0||0||0||---||0||0||0||0||0|
|2013||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||8||3||1||1||100.0||2||2.00||2||1||0||0/0||0||0||118.8|
|2014||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||11||0||0||0||---||0||---||0||0||0||0/0||0||0||---|
|2015||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||0||0||0||0||---||0||---||0||0||0||0/0||0||0||---|
|2016||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||0||0||0||0||---||0||---||0||0||0||0/0||0||0||---|
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