RB Todd Gurley Rumored to Visit New England Sometime This Week


Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

With the NFL Draft less than two weeks away and not much else happening around the league, the hot topic continues to be draft speculation.  At minimum, this annual event draws us one step closer to opening kickoff, while encouraging diehard fans to envision a dream scenario in which his/her favorite NFL team shocks the world with that surprising, albeit highly-coveted prospect pick.  Call it the Wayne’s World “Mega-Happy Ending” for draftniks.

For example, imagine the New England Patriots drafting the best running back prospect since Adrian Peterson.  Well, according to Comcast SportsNet’s Mike Giardi, this unlikely story line could actually hold some water:

Now let’s not jump the gun and assume Georgia’s Todd Gurley is in fact the second coming of AP, because someone named Trent Richardson once held that same distinguished title.  Of course, we all know how that turned out (hint: it didn’t).  As a modern rule of thumb, we’ve come to expect that taking a running back in the first round is in hindsight, largely regrettable.  Heck, even the Pats haven’t had ample time to erase the memory of their own first-round blunder in Laurence Maroney.

For the sake of argument though, let’s just pretend New England foregoes their traditional Bill Belichick draft strategies and rather than trading down at pick #32, they move up and nab someone like Gurley and his unparalleled talent.  Not only would Tom Brady — arguably the greatest quarterback of all-time — be surrounded by deadly aerial weapons in Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelman, but he’d also have ground access to a potential top-5 overall NFL back.

At his position, Todd Gurley is a jack-of-all-trades.  If you’re unfamiliar with his work, check out this video.  The former track star would more than help rectify the losses of both Shane Vereen (i.e., soft hands, long speed) and Stevan Ridley (i.e., power between the tackles, deceptive burst), because while he encompasses the prime skill sets of both aforementioned players, Gurley also possesses the ability to return kickoffs and even throw up the occasional deep ball.  The man is a marvel; the definition of rare backfield talent.

Of course, the Pats are most likely seeking to utilize that first pick on a “Big Vince” Wilfork-type defensive tackle replacement, or use it to corral an elite cornerback prospect.  And yet, there is the ever popular New England trade-down option, but it is still fun to speculate.  After all, we are merely experiencing a simple team visit and Gurley is not leaving Foxboro with a contract.  I’ll admit though, it is an enticing visit opportunity nonetheless and quite possibly, one with a potential “Mega-Happy Ending.”