Every year it seems like there's a player who comes out early that shocks everyone. This year, that player was redshirt sophomore Peyton Barber.
He wasn't drafted, but he was quickly signed by the Bucs when the draft ended. So what are they getting?
Peyton Barber isn't the fastest, he isn't the shiftiest, but he's an extremely hard runner who is going to fight for every yard he can. Without Peyton Barber, Auburn's 2015 season is an absolute disaster. With Jovon Robinson and Roc Thomas injured early in the year, Barber stepped up and pounded his way into the hearts of every Auburn fan. When Louisville began coming back in the 2nd half of the game opener, it was Barber who put the team on his back and sealed the victory.
Peyton Barber ran for over 1000 yards in the 2015 season, continuing a trend of running backs at Auburn doing so. Had Jovon Robinson not returned to the lineup and early a lot of carries in the second half of the season, then he probably would have had even more yards than the 1017 he finished with. After starting the season with five 100+ yard games in the first seven games of the season, he finished with none over the last five games.
For fans of the Bucs, you're getting someone is determined to make it. He may not give you the flashy runs you want, but he's going to be a good one for you when you need to gain yards on the ground. Off the top of my head, I'd compare him to Mike Turner with the Falcons a few years ago.
Congrats, Peyton! Go take care of your mom. You weren't here very long, and we only really got to see you on the field for one season, but you're the reason the season was just mediocre and not horrendous. We'll forever love you for the heart and soul you poured into carrying the Auburn offense for much of the season. War Eagle!