New England Patriots fullback James Develin is the unsung hero in the team’s ground game this season.
The Players and the coach love fullback James Develin. The New England Patriots fullback has been a major factor in the team’s ability to run the ball this season.
Speaking to the media Wednesday, head coach Bill Belichick took time to praise the worth ethic and toughness of Develin.
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"“He loves to play,” Belichick said. “Yeah, he’s happy to go in there. He’s done a good job for us on the punt team, the kickoff return team, he’s played for us in the kicking game, a very dependable player. James is strong. He’s not big like a lineman, but he’s got very good playing strength for his size. I’d say he’s built to last.”"
That toughness is why Develin hasn’t allowed the fullback position to go extinct in New England. Due to the injury to Rob Gronkowski, Develin’s playing time has increased as a blocker and he has also gone out for passes, playing more of a tight end role.
At 6-foot-3, 255 pounds, the hits Develin has put on opposing linebackers and defensive ends has added a physical and punishing power to the ground game that was missing a year ago when he was out for the season. Again, it is his toughness and mentality to lead block that has made him a factor in the Patriots’ offense this season.
"“He’s got a strong body and he can take contact and he can give it out, too,” Belichick added. “He’s tough. He’s got a good mentality. He likes contact. He seeks it out, but he’s changed up his techniques and as he’s played more guys have kind of played him differently. There are some things he’s had to deal with this year that maybe he didn’t have to deal with – he didn’t play too much last year – but two years ago from a technique standpoint. He’s adjusted and adapted to that. He’s done a good job.”"
Matt Lengel: New England Patriots tight end Matt Lengel is already on to Sunday’s game. A week after catching his first pass and touchdown reception, the 26-year-old tight end is not allowing the recognition to get to him.
Speaking to the media on Tuesday, Lengel gave a very Patriot-like response in regards to life after his touchdown catch.
"“New week, new opponent, everything is new,” he said via ESPN. “You have to keep going and have a short memory, good or bad.”"
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