We’re confused by Bill Belichick’s comments on Sony Michel

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

Patriots HC Bill Belichick made some puzzling comments about RB Sony Michel’s return from injury.

Compared to the start of the season, the long-term outlook of the New England Patriots’ running back position has drastically changed in recent weeks amid the emergence of Damien Harris, who’s pretty much ended the discussion in regards to the starting RB conversation.

After beginning the season on injured reserve with a hand issue, Harris has been a revelation for the Patriots, compiling three 100-yard games while averaging an incredible 5.5 yards per attempt. To be fair, Sony Michel landing on IR with a quad injury really opened the door for Harris to grab hold of the starting job, and fans have grown concerned that the 2018 first-round pick will eat into his workload once he reenters the fold.

When that happens, however, remains to be seen. We say that because head coach Bill Belichick offered up some mystifying comments about Michel’s recovery process and if he’ll be activated off injured reserve in time for Sunday’s showdown against Houston.

Anybody have a count in terms of how many times Belichick has left Patriots fans guessing about a player’s status since he was handed the keys to the franchise back in 2000?

These comments are alarming when you consider that the Patriots designated Michel to return back on Nov. 6, giving him a 21-day window to be activated or else he’ll land back on injured reserve for a minimum of three weeks.

Sure, it hasn’t even been two weeks yet and Belichick is notorious for taking these sorts of things down to the wire when necessary, but this is definitely something to monitor in light of Harris’ dominance, which has really sparked questions about Michel’s future with the organization.

Again, if Harris was underwhelming as the No. 1 RB, we would just assume the Patriots are taking it slow with Michel and he would take back the starting role upon his return. However, that simply hasn’t been the case. Want to hear something crazy? Harris’ three 100-yard regular-season games are just two fewer than the Georgia product has registered across his two-plus years as the starter.

That stat is an indictment against Michel’s overall lack of agility and heavily criticized indecisiveness at the point of attack. That has to play a role in Michel’s delayed return. After all, a quartet of running backs as part of the game plan would make it nearly impossible for any of them to establish a rhythm.