New England Patriots fans hoping Adrian Peterson will somehow sign with their team should temper their hopes. According to a report, the team is likely to bring back LeGarrette Blount, who was a red-zone behemoth for the Super Bowl champions last season.
“Seeing Patriots owner Robert Kraft give LeGarrette Blount a big bear hug at the Celtics-Cavaliers game Wednesday night added fuel to the speculation that the big back will return to Foxborough this season,” wrote Jim McBride of the Boston Globe. “It’s seems like a no-brainer. Blount, who is wildly popular with his teammates, loves it here, the staff loves him, and he’s a perfect fit to round out the New England’s running back corps. He’s big (6 feet, 250 pounds), he knows the offense, and he has a nose for the end zone. Look for a new deal to get done sooner rather than later.”
It really does seem like a no-brainer.
While Blount isn’t a home-run hitter (unless it involves dragging defenders to the goal line with him), he is a veritable touchdown-scoring machine. He led the NFL last year with 18 rushing scores and cracked 1,000 yards on the ground. Though his impact was minimal during the team’s playoff run, Blount’s ability to take over late in games during the regular season was a boon to the offense.
Blount is no spring chicken. He has eclipsed the dreaded 30-year-old mark that typically spells the beginning of the end for NFL running backs. That said, last season marked the first time in Blount’s career in which he was a true bell cow. He toted the rock 299 times, and though his 3.9 yards per carry average is below average, it’s clear he has plenty of tread on his tires for at least one more season of similar usage.
New England should bring Blount back. He won’t cost much and has great value in the role that he’s been given. We expect it to happen, though perhaps the Patriots might wait until after the draft to see what players might fall into their laps at the end of April.