7 players the New England Patriots gave up on too soon in the Bill Belichick era

New England Patriots v Miami Dolphins
New England Patriots v Miami Dolphins / Mark Brown/GettyImages
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LeGarrette Blount

It's actually unfathomable to recollect the Patriots moving on from LeGarrette Blount after he accomplished the best season of his career.

After being traded to the Patriots from the Bucs in 2013, Blount ended the year just one yard behind Stevan Ridley, totaling 153 carries for 772 yards and seven touchdowns. Blount also became an integral part of their post-season run, especially in the now infamous "DeflateGate game" against the Colts when he totaled 24 carries for 166 yards and four touchdowns.

Although he looked primed to be the team's next starting running back, he entered free agency at the end of the year and went on to sign a two-year contract with the Steelers.

Fortunately for New England, that pairing didn't last too long.

His time in Pittsburgh ended abruptly after he left in the middle of the week 11 game against the Titans, reportedly upset that he wasn't involved in the game for the first time that season. Shortly after that, the Steelers released him, and after clearing waivers, he re-signed with the Patriots.

Blount was back on the field the following week, picking up where he had seemingly left off, carrying the football 12 times for 78 yards and two touchdowns in a win against the Lions.

He spent the next two seasons with the Patriots, winning two Super Bowls and becoming one of the best running backs in the league. He ended his time in New England after the 2016 season when he added a second 1,000+ yard season to his resume and led the league with 18 rushing touchdowns.

Once hitting free agency in 2017, Belichick let his star player walk and sign with the Eagles. He may have only played two more years after leaving the Patriots, but had he remained where he saw the most success; he may have solidified himself as one of the best to ever suit up in the red, white, and blue, especially since it took many years for the Patriots to find a player even remotely close to replace his production.