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|Taken in the 2nd round of the 2011 draft, Vereen was expected to earn a role in the Patriots backfield committee last season but nagging injuries caused him to miss time in training camp and throughout the season. At season’s end, he had accumulated just 15 rushes for 57 yards and a score in five games. Fellow rookie Stevan Ridley surpassed him on the depth chart and Vereen enters 2012 competing with Danny Woodhead and Joseph Addai for the role as Ridley’s backup and as a pass receiving threat out of the backfield. Since we can all assume that New England will use each player in a situational role, Vereen will need to clearly beat out Woodhead and Addai to earn 8-10 touches a game and that seems unlikely. Woodhead has been productive in limited opportunities during his two years with the team and will likely approach the six touches per game he had last season. While Vereen is clearly the player to own rather than Woodhead or Addai given his upside, he also clearly ranks behind Ridley. He is a late round pick in redraft formats and has more value as a prospect in dynasty leagues.
| Vereen activated off short-term IR -- Mon Nov 18 5:55 pm --|
Patriots plan to ease in third-year back on MNF
|The New England Patriots activated RB Shane Vereen from short-term injured reserve prior to Monday night's game against the Carolina Panthers. The Patriots plan to ease Vereen, who has been sidelined since Week 1, back into their offensive game plan Monday, a league source told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter
Vereen was placed on injured reserve with a designation to return after suffering a broken wrist in New England's season-opening victory against the Buffalo Bills. (ESPN Boston)|
FF Today's Take: The Giants also planned to "ease in" Andre Brown in Week 10 before giving him 30 carries in his season debut, so game flow will have a lot to do with how much Vereen sees the field in his return. Either way, Vereen can be a difference-maker down the stretch in fantasy - especially in PPR formats - if he can stay healthy. Brandon Bolden may split passing-down snaps with Vereen tonight, but his run at fantasy relevancy is likely over.