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Roster Breakdown: Running backs

Posted Jul 3, 2014

With some down time before training camp we decided to do our first of what should be many looks at the roster. Today we handle the running backs and we will analyze a different position each day.

Locks: Shane Vereen, Stevan Ridley, James White

Bubble: Brandon Bolden, Stephen Houston

Long shots: Jonas Gray, Roy Finch

BREAKDOWN: Vereen and Ridley are entering the final year of their contracts and both would seem to have plenty of motivation to produce. Ridley is the only proven “workhorse-type” back on the roster and he will get the opportunity to seize the lead role – provided he can hold on to the ball. Vereen remains the versatile threat he’s been when healthy, and rookie James White has a similar skillset and impressed during the short snapshots we saw in the spring. Bolden has roles on special teams but has never consistently shown the ability to contribute out of the backfield. If one of the undrafted youngsters flashes in camp his days could be numbered. Houston (6-0, 225) and Gray (5-10, 225) have the size to perhaps fill the power role, and Houston appeared to be the stronger candidate. Finch is tiny but can flat out fly, and his explosiveness could earn him a look in the return game. In any regard he should be fun to watch during the preseason. There should be a spot on the practice squad for at least one of them.

MORE ROSTER BREAKDOWNS: QB | RB | WR | TE | OL | DL | LB | CB

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The opinions, analysis and/or speculation expressed on the PFW Blog represent those of individual authors, and unless quoted or clearly labeled as such, do not represent the opinions or policies of the New England Patriots organization, front office staff, coaches and executives. Authors' views are formulated independently from any inside knowledge and/or conversations with Patriots officials, including the coaches and scouts, unless otherwise noted.

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