Patriots: Sony Michel’s Week 1 status latest sign he’s falling down depth chart

Patriots RB Sony Michel (Photo by Billie Weiss/Getty Images)
Patriots RB Sony Michel (Photo by Billie Weiss/Getty Images) /

Patriots RB Sony Michel’s status for Week 1 is reportedly uncertain.

New England Patriots running back Sony Michel needed a bounce back season in the worst way this year.

Across 16 games in 2019, the former first-round pick logged 247 carries for 912 yards and seven touchdowns. His 3.7 yards per carry ranked 40th out of 47 qualified players in the NFL.

Though Michel was primarily deployed as a runner between the tackles, his lack of effectiveness in the passing game was pretty alarming, as he recorded a measly 12 receptions for 94 yards. That’s pretty abysmal, considering that he plays for a team that loves to utilize its RBs as receivers out of the backfield.

Unfortunately for Michel, his potentially career-altering season might get off to a delayed start. According to Jeff Howe of The Athletic, the 25-year-old’s status for Week 1 is officially up in the air.

Michel was placed on the physically unable to perform list at the start of training camp as he continues to recover from offseason foot surgery. This has become a concerning regularity for the Georgia product, as he’s started camp on the PUP list in each of his first three years in the NFL.

While he’s gotten healthy in time to handle a heavy workload in each of his first two seasons, that might not be the case in 2020. For starters, big things are expected from 2019 third-round pick Damien Harris, who impressed during preseason but ultimately failed to carve out a role as a rookie due to various injuries.

On top of that, the Patriots signed veteran Lamar Miller, who will be out to prove something after missing all of 2018 with a torn ACL. Though there are a ton of question marks surrounding the 29-year-old RB, he’s one season removed from being named to the Pro Bowl after compiling over 1,000 yards on the ground with the Houston Texans.

We hate to be pessimistic, and Michel obviously shouldn’t rush back with the fear that he might be losing his starting job.

However, when you couple his ineffectiveness in 2019 with yet another injury setback, it’s really hard not to draw the conclusion that the former No. 31 overall pick is falling down the pecking order in New England’s backfield.

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