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|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.
|Rashad Jennings listed as Giants starting RB -- Tue Sep 8 10:55 am --|
Still a risky Week 1 play versus Cowboys
|Paul Schwartz reports on Twitter that Rashad Jennings is listed as the starting running back on the Giants' initial depth chart. Jennings started the first three preseason games as well before rotating series evenly with Andre Williams, who's made strides to improve his play on passing downs. (Twitter)|
FF Today's Take: It's still looking an awful lot like running back by committee. Jennings is a risky RB2 play even in a good matchup Week 1 against the Cowboys, and both Williams and Shane Vereen could emerge as viable flex options.
|Rashad Jennings sharp in practice -- Tue Aug 4 10:05 am --|
Giants RB reportedly looking "big, strong, fast and quick"
|NJ.com reporter Jordan Raanan said running back Rashad Jennings had a "real nice start" to training camp and looks "big, strong, fast and quick."
Raanan reported that Jennings made middle linebacker Jon Beason look foolish in a 1-on-1 pass-catching drill, although he did have the ball get popped free by linebacker J.T. Thomas later in the drill. (NJ.com)|
FF Today's Take: Jennings is a versatile back who can serve as a workhorse and can do everything the Giants needs him for between the 20s and in the red zone. Unfortunately, he's got a lot of competition for carries, including Shane Vereen, big back Andre Williams, second-year Tulane product Orleans Darkwa and change-of-pace/kick returner Akeem Hunt. Still, he's being undervalued in most drafts and could be a Top 15 RB in the current offense.
|Giants like Vereen as complete passing-down back -- Mon Jul 20 4:35 pm --|
Former Patriot seen as strong in pass pro as well as a receiver
|The Giants like Shane Vereen as a pass protection running back, which mean they believe he can help their passing game in a variety of ways. Rashad Jennings still seems likely to get the bulk of the first-down and second-down work, with Andre Williams working in some and possibly helping out at the goal line. But Vereen wasn't just a pass-catching back in spring practices, and they don't seem worried about handing the ball off to him. If they're really struggling with their tackle situation and their pass protection in general, Vereen could end up seeing the field more than some might have anticipated. (ESPN)|
FF Today's Take: The Giants' tackle situation - with raw first-round LT Ereck Flowers replacing the injured Will Beatty and turnstile RT Marshall Newhouse filling the role Flowers was supposed to occupy - is among the worst in the league. Vereen should be plenty involved and should be targeted as a high-upside RB4 this season that could end up being a weekly flex play in PPR leagues if he can stay healthy.