With the 2017 NFL season approaching, the New England Patriots will likely be cutting a veteran or two before the season starts.
As the New England Patriots prepare to attempt as Super Bowl Champions, they will have to trim their roster down before the season starts. This offseason, the Patriots made a lot of additions. One area they really focused on was at running back.
In 2016, LeGarrette Blount was the main workhorse for the Patriots in their backfield. Despite setting the single-season record for rushing touchdowns, the Patriots decided to move on from Blount. While the 18 rushing touchdowns for Blount was impressive, he didn’t reach the desired 4.0 yards per carry average.
With Blount gone, the Patriots added Mike Gillislee and Rex Burkhead to their backfield. With two new running backs coming in, this could force one of their veterans out. According to Mike Reiss of ESPN.com, Brandon Bolden might be the odd man out when the time comes to make cuts.
"Bolden has carved out a role on the roster in each of the past five seasons, but a sixth might be a long shot after the Patriots signed free agents Mike Gillislee and Rex Burkhead. Bolden makes his primary contributions on special teams, but he has also chipped in offensively at times; he has 203 career carries for 845 yards and six touchdowns. But with Gillislee, Burkhead and James White locks to make the roster — and Dion Lewis and D.J. Foster also in a good position — Bolden could get squeezed out. — Mike Reiss"
Throughout his career, Bolden has made his mark on the Patriots’ special teams. While this is certainly important, he hasn’t done much for the offense in his career.
The addition of Burkhead could be the one that pushes Bolden out. While Gillislee is certainly the replacement for Blount, Burkhead is the swiss army knife that can play on special teams too. For Bolden to avoid being cut, he is going to really have to impress the coaching staff this summer.