FOXBORO, Mass. — Like most NFL players starting with new teams, LeGarrette Blount‘s transition to the Patriots certainly hasn’t been easy, but a familiar wrinkle to the offense seems to be helping the fourth-year running back.
Blount spent his first three NFL seasons in Tampa Bay before signing with the Patriots during this offseason, but it’s the time he spent before getting drafted — at the University of Oregon — that he says is benefiting him now during training camp. The Ducks operate under an option-heavy, no-huddle offense — one that former Oregon coach Chip Kelly instituted before becoming the head coach of the Eagles this year — and while the Patriots don’t necessarily run the option to the extreme like Oregon does, the fast-paced style is something that Blount is welcoming with open arms.
“My experience with Oregon helps me a lot with that,” Blount said after Tuesday’s practice. “Being in this position, it’s kind of tough just learning the offense, but I mean, like I said, my experience with Oregon helps a little bit with that.”
With backup running back Brandon Bolden missing from practice on Monday and Tuesday, Blount has been given the opportunity to get more reps than usual this week in camp. On Tuesday, he was seen receiving handoffs in read-option formations from Tim Tebow. While the offense won’t likely be running very many option plays with Tom Brady under center, those kinds of opportunities could benefit someone like Blount in the long run if offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels decides to get tricky with his playcalling.