New England Patriots running back Shane Vereen could be helping out Tom Brady with his sudden lack of targets this season after it was reported that he lined up for a time at wide receiver during minicamp.
Vereen showed his ability to go deep last season during their romp of the Houston Texans in the palyoffs, hauling in a 25-yard pass and later a 33-yarder in a three touchdown performance.
The product of University of California, Berkeley under the tutelage of head coach Jeff Tedford prepared Vereen for the NFL. Tedford runs a pro-style offense where Vereen was able to showcase his talents as a polished route runner, writes NFL.com's Chris Wesseling. The Patriots might look to exploit mismatches in utilizing Vereen if he's covered by a slower linebacker, the same way the departed Aaron Hernandez was often used.
Per Wesseling: ' The difference between Vereen and underwhelming tight-end options such as Jake Ballard, Daniel Fells and Michael Hoomanawanui is playmaking ability. Including the playoffs, Vereen averaged a gaudy 6.4 yards per touch while finding the end zone seven times on just 88 touches last season. Depending on the condition of Rob Gronkowski's surgically repaired back, the Patriots could enter Week 1 without 90 percent of the receptions and 80 percent of the receiving touchdowns from last season. Don't be surprised if Vereen finishes behind only Gronkowski and Danny Amendola in the passing-game pecking order. '