Former first-round pick Laurence Maroney was traded away.
Pro Bowler Fred Taylor is now designated as his backup.
To whom you ask?
His name is BenJarvus Green-Ellis, or the “Law Firm,” as Patriots nation has dubbed him. He is the undrafted free agent out of Ole Miss and he is the first 1,000-yard rusher for the New England Patriots since some guy named Corey Dillon.
The Law Firm is as humble as they come. He knows there is no “I” in team, especially on the New England Patriots.
He threw around compliments and accolades to his offensive line. Green-Ellis knows that the Patriots are not about individual achievements but are all about team. And if it wasn’t for his teammates on offense, he would get a sniff of the 1,000-yard plateau.
Oh yeah, by the way, he was also third in the NFL in total touchdowns with 13 scores.
Not the AFC. You heard right—the whole National Football League.
He had more touchdowns than some marquee players you may have heard of: Chris Johnson, Calvin Johnson and Andre Johnson, to name a few. Only the Texans’ Arian Foster and KC’s Dwayne Bowe found paydirt more than the undrafted running back of the New England Patriots.
Not too shabby, huh?
Green-Ellis is more Antwoin Smith than Corey Dillon. He doesn’t have breakaway speed like Chris Johnson. He doesn’t have Barry Sanders-like moves. He just puts his head down and battles. Every yard he churns for is the longest yard. The Law Firm plays every play like it’s his last.
He is your prototypical Patriot.
He was taken off the collegiate draft scrap heap and made himself into a 1,000-yard rusher. He took advantage of the opportunity presented to him and he made the best of it.
Does this theme sound familiar?
It sounds like Tom Brady, Mike Vrabel, Tedy Bruschi, Troy Brown and Wes Welker. The one denominating factor is one Bill Belichick. The shoe-in Hall of Fame coach takes the spare parts and implements them into the well-oiled football machine.
In 2010, the undrafted tandem of Danny Woodhead and BenJarvus Green Ellis were the pistons that kept the Patriots' engine running. They helped balance the most potent offensive attack in the NFL. They got their assignments and did their jobs.
And the Law Firm made the case to the whole NFL that they made a mistake passing him by.
They judged him on drills but never judged Green-Ellis on heart and the will to compete.