According to reports, Patriots running back Sony Michel had minor knee surgery in May and is doing his rehab in Foxborough . Steven Senne/Associated Press

 

As the Patriots try to replace Tom Brady this season, the thought is that the focus on their ground game will likely increase. The rationale is simple – running the ball efficiently makes life easier for the quarterback.

That means the Patriots would like to have third-year running back Sony Michel at full health – something he hasn’t been since entering the NFL as a first-round pick in 2018. According to a recent report, the 25-year-old is working his way back from yet another injury. However, the hope is that this time, it’ll help him in the long run.

According to ESPN, Michel had foot surgery in May. This is reportedly viewed as a maintenance-type procedure to help Michel relieve certain discomfort he’s been experiencing. However, the question now is when he’ll be able to practice.

Patriots training camp is scheduled to start on July 28. Although it’s been reported that Michel is in Foxborough rehabbing, it’s not certain that he’ll be ready to go when the team starts to practice and could start camp on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list.

Michel has shown promise over his first two seasons in the NFL. However, he’s also continually dealt with injuries. Michel suffered a torn ACL in high school. In college, he suffered a knee injury in 2017. As a rookie, Michel had his knee drained in the offseason and then suffered another knee injury later in the season. Still, he played 13 games and led the Patriots with 931 rushing yards to go with six touchdowns.

Michel’s promise was seen that postseason where he rushed for 336 yards and scored six touchdowns in three playoff games. As a rookie, he averaged 112.0 rushing yards per game in the playoffs en route to a Patriots Super Bowl win. Last summer, Michel had a knee scope and started camp on the PUP list. He returned strong to lead the Patriots with 912 rushing yards to go with seven rushing touchdowns.

Whether it’s Jarrett Stidham or Brian Hoyer under center, the Patriots will need a solid running game. The team returns every running back from last season with Michel, James White, Rex Burkhead, Brandon Bolden and Damien Harris. The team also signed undrafted free agent J.J. Taylor.


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