LeGarrette Blount has yet to put ink to paper with the New England Patriots.
Perhaps the most underrated element of New England’s title run one year ago, Blount has watched as the Patriots signed Rex Burkhead to an already deep cast in the backfield. He’s also watched veterans like Adrian Peterson have a hard time finding work.
According to ESPN.com’s Mike Reiss, New England continues to treat the situation like they do everywhere else:
This is also the dynamic of what I see unfolding with running back LeGarrette Blount, who remains unsigned. The Patriots have recently taken a closer look at other options, such as Adrian Peterson (Vikings), Mike Gillislee (Bills) and Damien Williams (Dolphins). This year’s running back class in the draft is also considered strong. The bottom line: If I’m Blount, and the ultimate goal is to return to New England, I’d be careful of waiting too long to re-sign because the door might soon be closed entirely. The Patriots would like Blount back, but I don’t sense that they feel they need him back.
In other words, Blount will be back in New England at the price of the team’s choosing, or not at all.
Blount was a bit of a breakout star last year, carrying the offense while Tom Brady served a four-game ban and eventually rushing for 18 touchdowns. He’s a power back and the two sides are bound to disagree on the money he should receive, so Blount will have to decide if it’s about the cash or competing for more titles.
With a new rookie class on the way, Blount might be wise to just re-up as soon as possible. Numbers in today’s game don’t mean much for a back of his ilk, even if it’s a bit unfair to the player. New England still gives him the best shot at a title and maybe some incentive-based stipulations while defenses focus on Brady.