New England Patriots: Rhamondre the ‘Ram’ Stevenson made Michel expendable

Rhamondre Stevenson #38 of the New England Patriots (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Rhamondre Stevenson #38 of the New England Patriots (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

New England Patriots rookie running back, Rhamondre “Ram” Stevenson made former Patriots first-round pick Sony Michel expendable. Patriots fans are really going to love this guy.

It didn’t take long for Stevenson to make Michel, a solid running back in the Patriots loaded stable, become a roster casualty with his trade this week to the Los Angeles Rams.

He’s been so good that the Patriots felt comfortable dealing away Sony Michel, albeit for two lower-round draft picks in a less than stellar return for a bonafide solid NFL running back.

Stevenson’s abilities made New England Patriots Sony Michel expendable

After an inauspicious beginning to his Patriots career and being scorched by running backs coach Ivan Fears, Stevenson has made quite a comeback.

Fears wasn’t at all pleased with the rookie a few weeks ago, evidently after he flunked his conditioning test. That’s never a good thing in Foxborough.

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Yet, now he seems to have clearly won over the veteran Patriots coach who had these positive words to say more recently,

"“He has improved his status tremendously from where he was,” Fears told reporters. “If you remember, he couldn’t even get started on the right day, he couldn’t quite finish the conditioning test. So he started out in the tank. He has climbed out of there.”"

Rhamondre Stevenson has gone from being “in the tank” to being in the end-zone lots in a few weeks. That’s a nice transition.

In addition to Fears’ approval, Stevenson is already gaining rave reviews from one of the NFL’s top analysts (and a personal favorite), Louis Riddick.

Riddick is no ordinary “talking head”. He spent 13 years in personnel positions with the Washington Football Team and Philadelphia Eagles. (Again, it says here Riddick would be a great General Manager of the Patriots.)

Here’s part of what he had to say in a tweet,

"RB Rhamondre Stevenson’s preseason tape for the @patriots is just ridiculously good. Smooth, great feet, vision, strength, breakaway speed…and they got him in the 4th!!!!"

Riddick was a post-draft fan of the big back as well. He’s a front-runner when it comes to his admiration for Stevenson’s all-around ability.

And Riddick hit the nail right on the head on this big back. He can help transform New England’s offense from Cam Newton and no one to the multi-faceted machine it just may now become.

Sony Michel was a tweener back size-wise. He exhibited neither top speed nor did he have the size to get a yard or two in short-yardage situations.

Rhamondre Stevenson excels both in short-yardage and long. Stevenson has lit up the pre-season like a Christmas tree in December. Few if any Patriots rookie running backs have ever burst onto the scene like the Ram has done so far.

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It’s another piece of solid evidence in favor of the new direction in drafting by New England. Looks like they finally nailed a draft in 2021.

Picks like Stevenson, Mac Jones, Ronnie Perkins, and hopefully Christian Barmore signal well for this new Patriots draft strategy.

This new direction was egged on by an uncharacteristic “request” for a good draft by owner Robert Kraft. There seem to be few bumps in this draft, at least on paper.

Now at present, the paper trail is leading to good results on the field, and Stevenson (along with a certain Mac Jones among others) has helped make that perfectly clear.

Right out of the gate. Stevenson has demonstrated his ability not only as a short-yardage back but also with his take-it-to-the-house ability, as well.

Stevenson showed off this later talent in his first NFL more-season game with a blistering 91-yard touchdown run.

He leads the NFL in preseason rushing yards with 194 and he is logging a 7.8 yards-per-carry average, as well.

In addition, he has scored four touchdowns in two games. That’s half the total of all New England running backs in 2020.

Note: That excludes Cam Newton, of course, who had to do much of the New England Patriots running last season and scored 12 touchdowns himself.

Those are the reason why the Patriots felt solid enough in the running back room to send Sony Michel out of town to the LA Rams.

Actually, it’s not a bad landing spot for the former Georgia stalwart at all. He’s now with a very good team, in a brand new stadium, and in la-la land. Things could be worse!

Next. Stephon Gilmore trade proposal for the Dallas Cowboys. dark

So that’s an update on this writer’s favorite draft pick this year (along with Jones), Stevenson, and why his talents made Michel expendable. Simply stated, Stevenson can do it all.

He can handle short yardage, take the ball to the house, catch it out of the backfield, and if his blocking is up to snuff, he’ll be the complete package, a three-down back.

The emergence of Stevenson primarily along with the presence of the Patriots’ other solid backs is why Sony Michel was sent packing to Los Angeles. Good luck to all.