James White avoids injury scare, states case for Patriots' top pass-catching RB role

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- James White did not emerge in his 2014 rookie season, playing just 30 snaps over three games. He was a regular on the team's game-day inactive list.

The Wisconsin alum hopes this season will be different as he vies to replace the departed Shane Vereen as the New England Patriots' primary pass-catching running back.

Thursday night's preseason opener against the Packers was his first chance in games to state his case, and White played 44 offensive snaps, avoided an injury scare when he was hit on the right thigh/knee in the second quarter, and finished with four catches for 52 yards in showing some elusiveness after the catch.

"It was a great feeling. Good to get out there with my teammates and compete against another team," he said.

White didn't see much daylight as a rusher, totaling eight carries for 12 yards. His long run, of 7 yards, came early in the third quarter around left end behind pulling right guard David Andrews. He also appeared to miss one blitz pickup on one of the seven sacks of quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo.

"Every running back has to be able to do it; if you can't pass protect, you're not going to be in there," he said. "So you better take pride in it and keep getting better at it."

White's extended opportunity Thursday was a result of his primary competition for the job -- Travaris Cadet, Dion Lewis and Brandon Bolden -- all being sidelined. His workload was one aspect that stood out when analyzing offensive snap counts from the game.


White -- 44 of 63

Jonas Gray -- 18 of 63

Tony Creecy -- 1 of 63


Eric Kettani -- 10 of 63

James Develin -- 5 of 63


LT Chris Barker -- 63 of 63

RT Cameron Fleming -- 60 of 63

C/G David Andrews -- 56 of 63

G Shaq Mason -- 53 of 63

G Tre' Jackson -- 49 of 63

G/C Josh Kline -- 25 of 63

G Ryan Groy -- 3 of 63

OT Mark Asper -- 3 of 63


Garoppolo -- 56 of 63

Tom Brady -- 7 of 63


Brandon Gibson -- 47 of 63

Josh Boyce -- 43 of 63

Jonathan Krause -- 42 of 63

Chris Harper -- 27 of 63

Danny Amendola -- 7 of 63

Zach D'Orazio -- 3 of 63


Jimmay Mundine - 37 of 63

Jordan Devey -- 16 of 63

Michael Hoomanawanui -- 9 of 63

Logan Stokes -- 9 of 63