View Full Version : Chiefs 30 FAs in 30 Days: BenJarvus Green-Ellis

02-18-2012, 08:53 AM

30 FAs in 30 Days: BenJarvus Green-Ellis
By Josh Looney

NAME: BenJarvus Green-Ellis
POSITION: Running Back

HEIGHT/WEIGHT: 5-11, 215

COLLEGE: Mississippi

GP/GS: 53/20

AGE/EXPEREINCE: 26/4 seasons

BACKGROUND: BenJarvus Green-Ellis didn’t make the Patriots roster on his first attempt. An undrafted rookie out of Ole Miss, Green-Ellis was cut by the Patriots following his first training camp with the team and began his career as a member of New England’s practice squad in 2008.

Though he turned in an impressive rookie preseason, it wasn’t until LaMont Jordan suffered a calf injury and Laurence Maroney was hampered with a nagging shoulder injury that Green-Ellis received his first chance on the Patriots 53-man roster. The call-up occurred on October 11, 2008 and Green-Ellis has stayed on the active roster since.

After Green-Ellis bid his time in a reserve role for the 2008 and 2009 seasons, New England traded Maroney to Denver and saw both Fred Taylor and Kevin Faulk fall to early-season injuries. Green-Ellis would receive his first chance as a regular starter in 2010.

In 11 starts, Green-Ellis led the 2010 Patriots in rushing with 1,008 yards on 229 attempts. He led New England in rushing yards last season as well, splitting time in the backfield with Danny Woodhead and rookie Stevan Ridley.

Carrying the reputation as a hard-nosed ball carrier, “The Law Firm” has yet to fumble in his 510 career rushing attempts.

AVAILABILITY: Green-Ellis played last season on a one-year contract after the Patriots slapped a second-round tender on the restricted free agent. He’s scheduled to hit unrestricted free agency for the first time of his career in March.

In preparation for Green-Ellis’ impending free agency, the Patriots drafted two running backs last year – Ridley and Shane Vareen. Ridley was the most active as a rookie, playing in all 16 games (two starts) and logging 87 carries for 441 yards. Woodhead is also set to return next season.

With the Patriots boasting several young rushing options, Green Ellis’ future with the team is unclear.

Agent Joel Segal said earlier this week on PFT LIVE that he has had “on-and-off” conversations with the Patriots about a new contract for Green-Ellis. ESPN’s Mike Reiss believes Green-Ellis will stay in New England as long as the price is right.

COACHING CONNECTIONS: Green-Ellis’ connections to the Chiefs begin with GM Scott Pioli. The running back was part of Pioli’s final rookie class in New England, starting three games for the Patriots as an undrafted college free agent.

Evan Silva of Pro Football Talk posted a tweet earlier this week that gained steam, connecting Green-Ellis to new Chiefs offensive coordinator Brian Daboll.

“Green-Ellis knows Daboll's system. One of NFL's top short-yardage/goal-line backs. Could be power complement to Jamaal Charles (ACL).”

It should be noted, however, that Daboll and Green-Ellis have never been part of the same organization at the same time. Daboll left New England in 2007 to become quarterbacks coach with the New York Jets and has been in Cleveland, Miami and Kansas City since.

Green-Ellis also has some connections inside the Chiefs locker room, teaming with Dexter McCluster and Kendrick Lewis on the Ole Miss football team just a few years ago. McCluster and Lewis both played extensively as sophomores during Green-Ellis’ senior season in 2007.

WHY HE FITS: The Chiefs will return two speedsters in Charles and McCluster, but he power game is missing with Thomas Jones, Jackie Battle and Le’Ron McClain each scheduled to hit unrestricted free agency.

When Charles was lost for the year to an ACL injury, the Chiefs lacked an explosive runner who could log 20 carries week-in and week-out. Green-Ellis brings experience as both a role player and a feature back, which is something the Chiefs might find appealing.

Even if the Chiefs re-sign one of their three unrestricted free agent running backs, there’s still room to add another reliable rushing option - especially with Charles coming off knee surgery.

02-18-2012, 09:13 AM
BJE or T RICH???