One of this week’s NFL rumors involves the New England Patriots and the final spot on the final 53-man roster. The battle for the final roster spots is one of the most interesting stories in each team’s training camp every year. This year, it looks as though one of the spots could be going to rookie Brandon Bolden.
Out of the University of Mississippi, Bolden went undrafted in the 2012 NFL Draft and many didn’t give him much of a chance to make an NFL roster. But the rookie has worked hard and with a little help he looks to be on the verge of earning a running back spot on the roster for the beginning of the regular season.
This training camp many followers of the Patriots have compared this rookie to a recently departed running back, BenJarvus Green-Ellis. Green-Ellis was undrafted out of Mississippi in 2008 and, like Bolden, was an unlikely candidate to earn a spot on the final roster. But the running back earned that spot and eventually became the team’s starting running back helping them to Super Bowl XLIV. Both running backs are from the same school, have the same measurements, and have taken the same path thus far with the same team.
Originally it looked as though Bolden was going to play on the special teams unit as the Patriots already had three running backs in 2011 NFL Draft picks Stevan Ridley and Shane Vereen and veteran Joseph Addai. However, Addai struggled to gain fitness and was released leaving a spot open which now looks to be within reach for Bolden.
Each season there are surprise undrafted players who outplay others in training camp to win a spot on the final roster. Sometimes those players even end up being stars. This year in the New England Patriots camp Brandon Bolden looks to be that player. Bolden will get another chance to prove his worth to the Patriots when they begin preseason play Thursday night.