Patriots Training Camp Preview, Part 2

I listed the stable of running backs the Patriots yesterday in the QB fallout talk, but here they are again with mini profiles.

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# NAME AGE SEASONS COLLEGE
29 Blount, LeGarrette 29 7 Oregon
33 Lewis, Dion 25 5 Pittsburgh
38 Bolden, Brandon 26 5 Mississippi
28 White, James 24 3 Wisconsin
34 Brown, Donald 29 8 Connecticut
36 Gaffney, Tyler 25 3 Stanford
27 Foster, D.J. 22 R Arizona State
47 Iosefa, Joey 25 1 Hawaii

I list them in order of how important I think they are to the team’s success.

Not knowing the timetable for Lewis’s return I feel like I had to Blount first. He is the guy they trust and the guy who, if they can get him to the second level, can do the most damage to opponents. I expect him to get heavy usage inside the red zone especially.

Lewis is a great complement to Blount and if he is back for the opening night and paired with Blount that will give the coaches and Jimmy G. plenty of options and ways to be creative and conservative at the same time.

Boldin works so hard all the time. He lacks vision, so he tends to struggle with cut back runs or plays that are blown up by the defense, but he more often than not gets at least 3 yards and makes the opponent pay for tackling him.

I feel like White has the best total package of tools of any of the backs on this list, but he has yet to really emerge in the presence of the others. He was good last year in his fill in role for Lewis, but can he overtake or contribute with Blount and Lewis both healthy?

I’m not sure why Donald Brown is here, but I think he can be good if he can make the team. I’m not sure what he has left in the tank now, 8 years in. Even though he is only 29, he was used so much in college I feel like his body is probably more like a 32-33 year old RB.

Gaffney is a total wild card. Been out 2 years recovering from injury. He was explosive in college, could be a steal if he is able to come back healthy. Could be on the scrap heap come August 15th.

I think they are hoping to get Foster onto the practice squad as injury insurance. I don’t expect to see much out of him, especially during the Jimmy G. 4 game run.

In my list in the QB part of my preview I left Iosefa off because if he makes the roster I will be shocked. There is just so much talent ahead of him and when he got a few chances last year he just didn’t show NFL caliber explosiveness to me.

Depth Chart coming out of Training Camp

Starter: Legarrette Blount
Backup: Donald Brown
Third Down/Pass Catching Back: Dion Lewis
Backup: James White
In Case of Emergency: Brandon Bolden
Practice Squad: DJ Foster
Cut: Tyler Gaffney, James Iosefa

Here is the compilation of my roster guess through today:

QB 4 RB 5
Tom Brady Legarrette Blount
Jimmy Garrapolo Donald Brown
Jacoby Brissett Dion Lewis
Unsigned Veteran James White
Brandon Bolden
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