Getty James White
The New England Patriots would love to have running back veteran James White on hand when the season kicks off this fall, but it’s starting to feel like a long shot. According to ESPN’s Mike Reiss, White walked with what has been described as “an awkward gait”.
White’s versatility and leadership have been invaluable to the Patriots in recent seasons, but New England may be forced to do without the 30-year-old earlier this year.
White injured his hip during a week 3 defeat to the New Orleans Saints last year, and there still appears to be some level of hindrance following the surgery. The Patriots are very deep in running back after enlisting Pierre Strong Jr. from South Dakota St. and Kevin Harris from South Carolina. Adding the two rookies to a running back room that already included Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson added the kind of depth most teams crave in any position.
Did it also make White expendable?
A closer look at the Patriots’ RB situation
Harris is the guy who would appear to be in line for most carries, but Stevenson should be expected to push him hard in this area. The second year running back may have a higher ceiling due to his versatility, which includes a more natural receiving talent, but it depends on how much progress he has made since his rookie season.
Stevenson finished second behind Harris in running yards in 2021. While Harris beat the Patriots’ running game with 929 yards and 15 TDs, Stevenson had 606 yards on the ground and 5 TD. If Stevenson shows he can handle the third-down duties White has proven to be so efficient with during his career, New Englanders may not miss a beat.
White has received 381 receptions for 3,278 yards and 25 TDs in his career, so Stevenson has a long way to go to fill those shoes. The lack of an experienced team in that role could keep the Patriots attached to White for a while longer.
Acquisition of free agent Ty Montgomery is a dark horse racing to fill the role of White. Originally a running back, Montgomery played some sort of RB-WR hybrid for much of his career.
The 29-year-old has almost as many yards received (1,104) as he has run in his career (1,180). Either way, the Patriots are unlikely to keep more than 5 running backs on their roster for the 2022 season.
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Matthew Judon doesn’t like his Madden ratings
It’s that time of year again. The ratings are coming for the latest version of Madden NFL. Patriots newcomer Matthew Judon was apparently unhappy with his set ratings for the Madden 23 launch.
According to Madden’s overall ranking, Judon did not make the NFL’s top 10 edge rusher list. Judon isn’t sweating too much because he intends to change his ratings with him satisfying him.
Judon is perhaps looking to do some maintenance to push himself to an overall rating of 99 and start rolling out a franchise mode. Madden 23 will feature an improved franchise mode this year with a greater emphasis on improving the free-agent and Draft NFL experience. If Judon has freedom of action, the Patriots won’t need a rusher anytime soon.
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