Taken in the 2nd round of the 2011 draft, Vereen was expected to earn a role in the Patriots backfield committee last season but nagging injuries caused him to miss time in training camp and throughout the season. At season’s end, he had accumulated just 15 rushes for 57 yards and a score in five games. Fellow rookie Stevan Ridley surpassed him on the depth chart and Vereen enters 2012 competing with Danny Woodhead and Joseph Addai for the role as Ridley’s backup and as a pass receiving threat out of the backfield. Since we can all assume that New England will use each player in a situational role, Vereen will need to clearly beat out Woodhead and Addai to earn 8-10 touches a game and that seems unlikely. Woodhead has been productive in limited opportunities during his two years with the team and will likely approach the six touches per game he had last season. While Vereen is clearly the player to own rather than Woodhead or Addai given his upside, he also clearly ranks behind Ridley. He is a late round pick in redraft formats and has more value as a prospect in dynasty leagues.
Giants running back discussion-- Tue Jul 5 9:00 am --
Beat writers discuss workload of Jennings and Vereen
Rashad Jennings is likely to be the primary running back on first and second downs, given his ability to run, block and catch out of the backfield. I would expect him to get around 15-18 carries a game. I think the Giants will look to pick up where they left off last season with Rashad Jennings being the main ball carrier and Shane Vereen as the change of pace/third down back.(Giants.com)
FF Today's Take:The consensus of the Giants beat reporters is that Rashad Jennings are the leaders for touches headed into training camp with Jennings being the lead option on early downs and Vereen operating as the third-down back. Rookie Paul Perkins is the dark horse and someone for redraft leaguers to monitor as a free agent pickup or a late-round flier.
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