LeGarrette Blount’s Super Bowl XLIX and LI rings have yet to make an appearance at the Novacare Complex.
It’s unlikely he’ll be flaunting either amongst his new Philadelphia Eagles teammates any time soon.
Blount hasn’t worn the most recent one since he revisited his former New England Patriots teammates at owner Robert Kraft’s home in Brookline, Mass., on June 9. It was one final celebration capped off with one final piece of hardware carrying 283 diamonds and as many memories.
“I haven’t put it on again since I took it off that night,” the 30-year-old running back told reporters last Thursday, via PhiladelphiaEagles.com.
Blount plans to keep what he earned with the Patriots at home as he settles in with an organization that has gone 7-9 in consecutive seasons and last made the playoffs in 2013. He doesn’t think it would add much more to a fire that has plenty of kindling on hand.
“I feel like they’re pretty motivated themselves,” Blount said of his Eagles peers. “I don’t think they need to see the rings here, you know what I’m saying? I don’t think they need to see my rings to get motivated to win one.”
Blount doesn’t need to see his own rings to get motivated, either. More than two months of free-agent uncertainty passed – as did a seldom-used unrestricted tender – before the veteran officially signed a one-year, $1.25 million deal with the Eagles on May 17.
The Patriots had set themselves up to move on well before that juncture, even if the door to return remained ever so slightly cracked. The re-signing of Brandon Bolden, extending of James White, and acquiring of Rex Burkhead and Mike Gillislee had all transpired since the start of the 2017 league year. And ultimately, the door closed shut.
The 57 regular-season and playoff games Blount appeared in, the 788 carries he handled for 3,387 yards and 42 touchdowns, as well as the 20 catches for 145 yards and additional score he amassed with New England are in the rearview now. What Blount can bring to Philadelphia is at the forefront after a campaign in which he rushed for a career-high 1,161 yards while setting the franchise record with 18 TDs on the ground.
“I know what I can do, [the Eagles] know what I can do,” Blount said of his work in the backfield and out of it. “If it’s called for me to catch the ball, I do. I don’t drop passes. Whatever it is for me to do, I’m going to do it, no matter if it’s catching or running the football.”
Eagles head coach Doug Pederson has seen that willingness from Blount through No. 35’s first month with the team.
“He’s been a pro since he’s been here,” Pederson said during his final press conference of minicamp. “He’s eager to learn. He’s a sponge. He’s wanting to learn everything that we’re doing on offense, what Duce [running backs coach Duce Staley] has been talking and preaching to the guys.
“He’s been a class act, obviously coming from a class organization and a championship organization, and that’s the type of player, atmosphere and demeanor we’re trying to build here,” added Pederson. “So, it’s a great addition to have him.”
Blount checks in as one of seven running backs on Philadelphia’s 90-man roster alongside Ryan Mathews, Darren Sproles, Wendell Smallwood, Donnel Pumphrey, Byron Marshall and Corey Clement. Yet his experience, his 6-foot, 250-pound frame – and the cutback, downhill and goal-line abilities that come along with it – figure to hold a place on the depth chart.
And in the locker room.
“We’re going to keep grinding, we’re going to keep working,” said Blount. “We definitely want to improve our skillset. We definitely want to improve our record from last year. Like I said, we’re just going to keep grinding and working and let the chips fall where they may. You put in the work, and it’ll pay off.”