Dion Lewis, RB New England Patriots

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Pats pass-catching RB battle heating up

Monday, August 24, 2015, 10:34am

ESPN - [Full Article]

One of the best examples of competition bringing out the best in football players came in the New England Patriots' 26-24 victory over the New Orleans Saints on Saturday night.

Through the first drive of the third quarter, Dion Lewis played 23 offensive snaps as he made his case to be considered the top option to replace Shane Vereen as the team's top "passing back." His combination of blitz pickup, pass-catching ability, knack for picking up yardage after the catch, and determination in the red zone (11-yard touchdown run) was impressive.

Up to that point in the game, Lewis' primary competition for the job, James White, had played three snaps. All three of those snaps came out of the "pony" grouping in which he was on the field at the same time as Lewis.

"I thought Dion did a good job with his opportunities," coach Bill Belichick said in his day-after-game conference call. "He's had a solid spring and camp for us. He missed a few days there [because of injury], but I thought he ran well [Saturday] night."

Fantasy Impact:

As it turned out, White did too, the story said. Essentially taking over for Lewis from the second drive of the third quarter until the end of the game (the two were on the field together six snaps after that point), it was almost as if White felt the urgency to match Lewis.
That was what stood out most to me when reviewing the offensive snap counts from the game; how the competition between the two has raised the bar at a critical position in the Patriots' offense. White was drafted by the team for this role so he may have the edge because of that. Whoever wins the job should get a Shane Vereen-like role in the offense which would have PPR league value.

2015 Strength of Schedule - NE
W1W2W3W4W5W6W7W8W9W10W11W12W13W14W15W16W17
10
PIT
2
@BUF
25
JAX
BYE20
@DAL
19
@IND
6
NYJ
4
MIA
9
WAS
21
@NYG
2
BUF
7
@DEN
26
PHI
8
@HOU
30
TEN
6
@NYJ
4
@MIA

Schedule difficulty based on schedule-adjusted, positional defensive ranking. Top DEF = 1, bottom DEF = 32.

2014 Game Stats
WeekOppRuAttRuYdsRuTDFumYPRRecRecYdsRecTDTgtsYPCSnaps%
2PHI------------
Totals00000.0000000.000/00%

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