The New England Patriots’ running backs are coming off a productive 2016 season. The group rushed for a combined 2,131 yards and 23 touchdowns over the team’s 19 games – the best numbers the unit has had since 2013. However, two members of last year’s running back depth chart remain unsigned as unrestricted free agents: LeGarrette Blount and Brandon Bolden.
According to ESPN’s Mike Reiss, tough, the door has not yet been closed on at least one of the two returning to the team. Reiss reported on Tuesday that the Patriots and Bolden have kept an open dialogue throughout free agency and that a possible reunion between the team and the 27-year old would not be a surprise.
Bolden, who joined New England as an undrafted free agent in 2012, had only one rushing attempt for four yards in 2016. He saw the majority of his snaps on special teams and finished the campaign with the seventh-most kicking game tackles on the team while playing the fifth-most snaps.
Despite his solid contributions, though, doubt was cast on Bolden’s future with the team when it signed free agent Rex Burkhead to a 1-year, $3.15 million contract. On paper, the former Cincinnati Bengal looks like a possible replacement option for Bolden – but it seems as if New England might opt to give the veteran a chance to fight for a job.