New England Patriots: 5 players poised to breakout in 2018

FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 26: Rex Burkhead
FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 26: Rex Burkhead /
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(Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
(Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images) /

Rex Burkhead 

Labeled as the “perfect Patriot” when he signed a one-year deal last offseason, New England Patriots running back Rex Burkhead showed flashes of being just that during his first season with the team.

Slowed by injuries, Burkhead didn’t fully evolve into what many hoped he would.  Luckily, the team didn’t need him as much due to the season Dion Lewis head.  But, with the departure of Lewis, Burkhead has the opportunity to take on a larger role.

light. Related Story. Bengals knew Rex Burkhead would flourish with Pats

Depending on how first-round draft pick Sony Michel adjusts to life in the NFL, the veteran running back could emerge as a lead back.  Even if Michel eventually secures that role, the versatility of Rex Burkhead will make him a valuable back in the New England Patriots offensive scheme due to his ability to catch the ball out of the backfield.

Again, health will play a big role.  But, the fact that the team signed him to a new 3-year deal shows they like what he brings to the table and so will fans in 2018.With Lewis gone, Danny Amendola gone and Julian Edelman serving a suspension the first four games of the season, Burkhead could just have his best season as an offensive weapon Tom Brady will turn to.