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Rhamondre Stevenson shows he’s fit to handle more throw-ins


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Stevenson played well with Damien Harris. Now, it looks like the Patriots will get their 1-2 punch against RB soon.

Rhamondre Stevenson has had to take on a lot of the Patriots’ workload out of the backfield over the past few weeks. AP Photo/David Richard

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With Damien Harris with a thigh injuryRhamondre Stevenson rushed for 44 of the Patriots’ 64 rushing attempts over the past two weeks.

There were a few Tyquan Thornton sweeps, a few Bailey Zappe scrambles, and a touch or two here and there for rookies Kevin Harris and Pierre Strong Jr. But, for the most part, the Patriots relied on Stevenson to assume a increased workload.

Heading into Week 7, he’s 156 yards away from matching the rushing yards he had in 12 games last year.

“I feel like I’m in pretty good shape right now,” Stevenson said. “It was a task of course, just the workload was quite different from the first two weeks. But, I feel like I handled it pretty well and my o-line was supporting me, everyone at the attack was supporting me, so that made it easier for me.

Listed at 6ft, 230lbs, Stevenson said in July he had lost weight and felt better overall ahead of training camp. Stevenson weighed 246 pounds on the Patriots’ official roster last year.

Last season he didn’t have a single rush over 21 yards. This year he has several, including a 31-yard touchdown in last week’s win over Cleveland and a 49-yard rush against the Lions throughout his career.

“If that had happened last year, I don’t think I would have been ready,” Stevenson said. “But I’ve come in and attacked this offseason quite crucially and that’s been helpful.”

Based on this week’s injury reports, there’s a chance the Patriots offense will look a lot different this week.

Harris was listed as a full participant in Thursday’s practice. Quarterback Mac Jones is reportedly ready to play after missing three games with a sprained ankle, although the Patriots wouldn’t say whether or not he would be the starter Monday night.

Either way, a better-formed Stevenson improves the Patriots’ offense. New England is 2-0 this season in games where it has had 19 or more touches.

And, with the Patriots facing one of the worst defenses in the NFL this week, New England could use another big game on the field.

“I would definitely say it gives you a burst of energy,” Meyers said of how hard Stevenson runs. “For me though, I look at him a bit like a fan when I’m there sometimes.

“Just watching guys make great plays like [DeVante Parker making a catch]Running Rhomonda, [Damien Harris] functioning. I really like watching guys make games because you see why they’re here and what they’ve been through to get here and their stories. It puts a little smile on your face.



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