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Patriots RB Stevan Ridley on LeGarrette Blount

The New England Patriots will have to make a tough cut at the running back position, unless if they want to keep both second-year bruiser Brandon Bolden and trade acquisition LeGarrette Blount next season and roll with five running backs on the roster. The Patriots have to make tough cuts across the board, but it is still possible for the Pats to keep steady with five RBs on the 53-man roster.

Stevan Ridley is obviously the feature back and is one of the best feature backs in the league, but I would think the Patriots are interested in lowering his carries from 290 last season. While Ridley is a workhorse, 290 carries is a high number, and the Patriots should maximize Ridley’s stamina going forward following his first season as a starter. Ridley was a smashing success last season, but I am hoping that either Blount or Bolden can emerge as a good No. 2 option to Ridley. I have faith that one of those two backs can do that, but it will be interesting to see which one can help successfully alleviate Ridley’s workload.

LeGarrette Blount was in the doghouse under new Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano, but Blount is a former 1,000-yard rusher and was treated to harshly in Tampa Bay by Schiano. Ridley shared his thoughts on Blount, via NESN’s Doug Kyed, “He’s another back. At 250 pounds, what doesn’t he bring? There’s a lot of power in there. For him, he’s just learning one day at a time. As a unit, we’re sticking in there. Me, Shane, LeGarrette, Brandon Bolden, we’re sticking in there. Akeem [Shavers], the new guy that’s there, we’re all just trying to learn as much as we can. … We just have to help [Blount] out when he starts to struggle and the same for me. We’re all gonna have days where we’re gonna have our difficulties, but we just have to keep pushing.”

The Patriots have plenty of depth at the running back position, and each back bring something else to the table for this team. Shane Vereen is an explosive change-of-pace RB with incredible pass-catching skills, Ridley is a feature back, Leon Washington is an excellent returner, Blount is a home-run back (not a bruiser, get that straight despite his big frame), and Bolden is a bulldozer.

You can follow Joe Soriano on Twitter @SorianoJoe.

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Tags: Brandon Bolden LeGarrette Blount New England Patriots Stevan Ridley

  • Martin

    You’d have to think that if Ridley or Vereen gets injured. We’re going to have a decent back-up to those guys in Legarrete Blount. Brandon Bolden would step but, he’s not an every down back. He could once be – he’s developing nicely. Also having five running backs on the roster would be nice to see multiple people get some rest at the end if the regular season heading into the playoffs. It’s not a garrenteed assumption. But it’s deffinetly something to consider

  • http://sbpra.com/paulvsuffriti Paul V. Suffriti

    “Blount is a home-run back (not a bruiser, get that straight despite his big frame)” How fast can he be at 250 LBs? Are you saying he has break-away speed?

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      He’s more agile and explosive than purely fast, but he’s faster than you might think.

      • http://sbpra.com/paulvsuffriti Paul V. Suffriti

        Should be an interesting training camp with the RBs…..cannot wait to see how it plays out.

        • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

          No doubt about it, Paul, it’s going to be interesting to see these guys go at it (specifically Bolden and Blount).

  • NelsonvillianHill

    believe me, if blount had 290 carries, his numbers would be WAY BIG . . took 2001 carries to produce 1007 yards in his rookie year, and he never got to have camp with the bucs that year and didn’t know the playbook . . the Pats got themselves a winner! he only started 9 games that year i believe!

  • NelsonvillianHill

    if he had the 319 touches that martin had last year, he would have outshined martin . . period

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      I feel like you are going too far with that, but I also feel like your point is definitely a well-taken one. You definitely aren’t the first Bucs fan to drop in and say that Blount is a really good back and was mistreated by the Bucs, and I definitely agree with those statements; he was awesome as a rookie. I hope he can replicate that this year.