Lamar Miller officially put pen to paper on his New England Patriots contract Wednesday night.
Miller’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, announced the signing on Twitter.
— Drew Rosenhaus (@RosenhausSports) August 13, 2020
The Patriots and Miller agreed to terms Monday on a one-year deal, but the veteran running back needed to pass a physical and series of COVID-19 tests before his signing could be finalized. The 29-year-old missed all of last season with a torn ACL but was a Pro Bowler for the Houston Texans in 2018, rushing for 973 yards (4.6 per carry) and five touchdowns with 25 catches for 163 yards and one score in 14 games.
With Sony Michel currently on the active/physically unable to perform list, Miller will battle 2019 third-round draft pick Damien Harris for early-down reps in training camp. The Patriots reportedly are unsure whether Michel, who’s recovering from offseason foot surgery, will be ready to go by Week 1.
Though he must prove his injury did not zap him of his speed and elusiveness, Miller has been a consistently productive dual-threat back throughout his NFL career, surpassing 870 rushing yards in five consecutive seasons from 2014 to 2018. His 177 receptions during that span ranked 14th among NFL running backs, as did his eight receiving touchdowns.
The oft-injured Rex Burkhead has been the Patriots’ most versatile back in recent years, with Michel and James White’s skill sets tilting heavily toward rushing and receiving, respectively. Harris, a former standout at Alabama, logged just four carries as a rookie last season.
Undrafted rookie J.J. Taylor rounds out New England’s running back room. Veteran Brandon Bolden opted out of the season due to COVID-19 concerns.