New England Patriots reportedly interested in free agent RB Leonard Fournette

By Vincent Frank
Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

There’s a big-name player on the NFL free agent market with about a week to go before the 2020 regular season kicks off.

Earlier this week, the Jacksonville Jaguars placed former No. 4 overall pick Leonard Fournette on waivers. The running back cleared waivers on Tuesday, becoming a free agent in the process.

It now looks like the talented young ball-carrier is already getting some play on the free agent market.

Patriots reportedly interested in Leonard Fournette

This shouldn’t qualify as too much of a surprise. Despite the issues Fournette had with Jacksonville’s front office since they selected him early in the 2017 NFL Draft, he has still flashed some promise.

The former LSU standout tallied a career-high 1,674 total yards at a clip of 4.9 yards per touch for the Jaguars last season. While he averaged a decent 4.3 yards per attempt, Fournette also caught a whopping 76 passes. Adding receiving abilities to his game could make Fournette an intriguing option for teams.

Patriots depth chart suggests a need at running back

Former first-round pick Sony Michel is coming off foot surgery this past offseason and has been in and out of head coach Bill Belichick’s dog house. Michel averaged just 3.7 yards per rush as a sophomore last season and has caught 19 passes in two seasons.

Veterans James White and Rex Burkhead remain options behind Michel. Though, neither one can be counted on to shoulder the load. In particular, White is a catch-first back.

After adding Cam Newton to replace Tom Brady under center, it makes sense that New England would kick the tires on Fournette. He seems to fit offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels’ offensive scheme. Equally as important, the former top-five pick is still only 25-years-old and could be a long-term option in New England.

Interestingly enough, this comes on the heels of previous reports suggesting that the Pats had no interest in Fournette. That was more than likely Bill Belichick just being Bill Belichick in leaking a lack of interest to the media.