When it comes to the running back position, Patriot fans are really looking at the third-down-back battle between Travaris Cadet, Brandon Bolden and James White as the only real competition in the 2015 backfield. But, Jonas Gray could soon be making his own case as the feature back for New England.
Yes it is just one game. One preseason game, but Gray made the most of it.
It's all about making the best of your opportunities.
With LeGarrette Blount, Travaris Cadet and Brandon Bolden all out of last nights preseason loss, the Sports Illustrated cover-boy stepped in and stepped 55 yards for a touchdown to add to his total 74 yards on the ground for the night.
It's easy to let the mind wander.Jonas Gray, finally out of Belichick's doghouse, picking up where left off after 201 yds at Indy, just went for 55 yd TD vs GBay.— Skip Bayless (@RealSkipBayless) August 14, 2015
Now that Gray is out of the "My alarm didn't go off" doghouse, will we see the back that we saw in Indianapolis who torched the Colts for four touchdowns? No. Let's be real. He is not doing that on a consistent basis.
If he does, we'll lets just say I'm booking my Bay Area hotel this weekend. Frankly, it's unfair to expect that kind of production, but is it unfair to project that he could be better than Blount?
Now that seems more realistic.
On top of the weigh loss, Gray told Mike Reiss of ESPN that he worked on being more elusive on the field.Jonas Gray says he lost 3-5 pounds this offseason. He looked faster tonight.— Doug Kyed (@DougKyedNESN) August 14, 2015
"One thing I wanted to do [this offseason], and coaches stressed to me, was being able to beat guys in the open field and taking those 10-yard runs and making them 20-yard runs; making the first guy miss," he said late Thursday night.
So if on top of being the north-south bruiser that he currently is, Gray can now make guys miss in open field he most certainly sounds more gifted than Blount. At least on paper.
In five games for the Patriots last season, Blount rushed for 281 yards on 60 attempts and found pay-dirt three times. Pretty solid for a short sample size, but this season the 28 year old running back seems to be coming into camp on the wrong foot.
Remember, Blount is suspended for the season opener for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy while ironically enough, as a member of the team he will be watching the Patriots play from home, the Pittsburgh Steelers.Jonas Gray showed up to camp 10 pounds lighter, works hard and looks great. Legarrette Blount failed his physical and then hurt his knee— Ben Volin (@BenVolin) August 14, 2015
Sounds like another opportunity for Gray.
Let's see if he makes the most of it.
Photo Credit: USA TODAY Sports
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