The news that Shane Vereen will be missing from the Patriots backfield for at least eight weeks on short-term injured reserve while recovering from a broken bone in his wrist is a serious blow to an offense already rife with question marks. The third-year man's opening week productivity — he was the only running back to gain 100-yards on the ground through Sunday's games—came mostly after he suffered the injury, which makes what he did even more impressive.
Playing in relief of Stevan Ridley who was benched the entire second half after fumbling issues, Vereen played a major role in the Pats’ come-from-behind victory against the Bills on Sunday in Orchard Park, rushing for 101 yards while picking up another 58 yards on seven catches to become just the second player in franchise history with as many as 100 rushing yards and seven catches in the same contest. The first was by Curtis Martin who ran for 120 yards with eight catches in a 41-27 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers on December 16, 1995 at Pittsburgh’s Three Rivers Stadium.
Vereen also joined Ridley among the six Patriots (in 54 opening games) to run for over 100 yards in Week 1. Three of the previous five did so at the start of a 1,000-yard season, something that the injury will make make virtually impossible for Vereen to achieve. Here’s the complete list:
The author is solely responsible for the content.
He has also authored or made contributions to many books, including the Sports Illustrateds 100 Fenway: A Fascinating First Century.
Now living in Marblehead, hes focusing his attention on the Boston sports scene, specifically delving into the numbers affecting the Red Sox, Patriots, Celtics and Bruins, with the goal of informing and entertaining real fans. You can follow him on Twitter at @SabinoSports.