Bubble watch: LeGarrette Blount

(Continuing a month-long series analyzing players who are on the roster bubble and where they may potentially fit in 2013.)

NAME: LeGarrette Blount

POSITION: Running back

AGE: 26

2012 STATS: 13 games, 41 rushes (151 yards, 2 touchdowns), 1 catch (2 yards), 0 fumbles

INJURY STATUS: No known injuries


WHY HE SHOULD MAKE IT: Blount was a productive runner his first two seasons in Tampa Bay, and while he has off-field red flags, the emergence of Doug Martin played a role in Blount's significant dip in playing time last season. In Blount, the Patriots acquired a talented ball carrier who could find a spot at a position that often favors the hottest hand. Moreover, an offseason injury to Brandon Bolden could impact his ability to make the final cut this season, allowing Blount to secure a depth role in the backfield.

WHY HE SHOULD NOT MAKE IT: While the Patriots were able to get a productive season out of cornerback Aqib Talib, another player who had off-field problems before coming to New England, it's no guarantee that Blount will assimilate into the Patriots' system. If he's not a "program fit," the team likely will move on. Even if Blount is able to prove himself off the field, he may get caught in a numbers game: Bolden and Blount may be fighting for the fourth (and possibly final) spot in the backfield.

CLOSEST COMPETITION: RB Brandon Bolden, RB George Winn, FB James Develin