The Buffalo Bills have made their first transaction of training camp in the attempt to bolster one of their positions. The target? Running back -- one of the most important positions to this offense in the upcoming season.
The Bills announced on Wednesday evening that they've signed veteran free agent Taiwan Jones who had spent his entire six-year career with the Oakland Raiders. The running back has appeared in a total of 68 games through his career with the Raiders.
Jones, 29, hasn't gotten much time on the offensive side of the ball in his time with Oakland, having only carried the ball 44 times for 183 yards. He also has 17 receptions for 240 yards, and one career touchdown.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed by the Bills. Jones now joins LeSean McCoy, Jonathan Williams, Mike Tolbert, Cedric O'Neal, Joe Banyard, and Jordan Johnson in the running back room.
Joe B's Take
Based on this move, it's pretty clear that the Buffalo Bills are not happy with the depth of their running backs, and needed another player to add into the mix for the fourth player kept on the 53-man roster -- that is, if the Bills do keep a fourth past McCoy, Williams, and Tolbert.
Jones is a noted contributor to special teams, and that's where he made his mark for the Raiders throughout the past six seasons. And with all of O'Neal, Banyard, and Johnson failing to discern themselves either on the offensive side of the ball or on special teams, this is a roster signing that should directly put them on alert.
Now, just because we've heard of Taiwan Jones before, it doesn't necessarily mean he's guaranteed to make the 53-man roster. We've seen countless examples of mid-camp additions that just don't work out by the time the final cuts come around in September.
However, Jones gives the Bills a versatile back that has special teams prowess, and that can also make an impact in the passing game -- as he's shown in limited appearances with the Raiders, though averaging 14.1 yards per catch.
The trio of Cedric O'Neal, Joe Banyard, and Jordan Johnson need to step up their games now with Jones in the fold.