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RB Rex Burkhead - New England Patriots

5-10, 214Born: 7-2-1990College: NebraskaDrafted: Round 6, pick 2013

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Photo: Kevin Jairaj, US Presswire

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News you need to know

From the upgrade/downgrade report (Mon Dec 3): Burkhead is looking fresh in his return from IR and he'll be getting enough valuable touches in a good offense to make him a desperation flex with some injury upside going forward.

Week 14: at Miami Dolphins

All RB vs MIA

FBG says: Good matchup. The Patriots drafting Sony Michel has proven to be a solid pick in the 1st round for New England, and it would be expected that Michel continue to improve on his rookie season as the team rounds into form for the playoffs. On the season, Michel is averaging 4.5 yards per carry with five touchdowns on 144 attempts, including three 100+ yard games and another where he finished with 98 yards. The Patriots have the talent at the skill positions to move the ball through the air, but that no longer makes them unique in the NFL, so the decision to draft Michel was based on balancing out the offense come playoff time. Over his last three games, Michel has rushed 49 times for 227 yards and one touchdown, and although the Patriots enter each game intent on giving Michel a big workload, it ultimately comes down to the flow of the game which explains why he has seen fewer than 11 carries three times while also exceeding 18 carries in five other games. Fellow backfield mate James White has really been the backbone of the Patriots offense this season, totaling 988 yards (rushing and receiving) while scoring ten touchdowns. The combination of Michel and White give the Patriots a complete backfield, while Rex Burkhead was just activated last week after missing the Patriots last nine games and should provide a complimentary piece to this backfield. The Miami run defense has been the weak spot of this team in 2018, giving up the fifth most fantasy points to opposing running backs and the third most rushing yards per game (144.7). They have been fairly stingy with regards to rushing touchdowns, giving up only nine on the season, but that is nothing more than a moral victory when you consider how easily teams have gashed them between the twenties. The Dolphins have given up 75+ rushing yards to a running back in eight of their 12 games, and they face a very tough matchup this week against a New England offensive line that grades out as one of the best units in the league. In their first matchup, Sony Michel rushed 25 times for 112 yards and a touchdown, and Miami will need to play their best game of the season to prevent a similar result. The Patriots will challenge the Dolphins in the passing game, which means Miami will have to drop even more men in coverage than usual, which will give Michel, James White, and Rex Burkhead plenty of room to run. The Dolphins like to play their defensive ends outside of opposing offensive tackles, which leaves them vulnerable to teams who like to run up the middle, which is an area that Michel has excelled in this season.

Recent Stats and Projections

WEEKOPPoSNAPRSHYDTDTARGRECYDTDFumLPts
13 vs MIN 17 7 20 0 2 2 21 0 0 4.1
14 at MIA 0 4 2 0 2 1 3 0 0 0.5
14 at MIA PROJ-Dodds * 4 * * 2 * * * *
14 at MIA PROJ-Tremblay * 5 * * 2 * * * *
14 at MIA PROJ-Bloom * 6 * * 2 * * * *

Weekly Performance vs RB 1, RB 12, RB 24, RB 36

Percentile ranks

Rex Burkhead's percentile rank in each category, among RB with more than 50 fantasy points.

Recent Game Summaries

2018 Week 13 vs MIN (7 / 20 / 0 rush, 2 / 2 / 21 / 0 rec)

This was Burkhead's first game action in several weeks, and he was integrated slowly with a handful of touches. The important thing is that he looked healthy, but this is clearly Sony Michel and James White's backfield as of now, with Burkhead in as a change of pace/designed play back.

2018 Week 3 vs DET (0 / 0 / 0 rush, 3 / 2 / 26 / 0 rec)

Seeing limited play time due to the Sony Michel experiment, Burkhead didn't see a single carry, was missed on a touchdown throw from Brady, and exited the game late with a neck injury. Though Michel didn't look good, Burkhead's role remains tenuous at best.

2018 Week 2 vs JAX (6 / 22 / 0 rush, 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)

Whether it was due to concussion, performance, or potential, Rex Burkhead was not involved in the game at all, seeing the bulk of his work when the game was out of hand in the 4th quarter. One game does not make a trend, but he was only lined up wide once as well, and this is something worth monitoring. It wouldn't surprise if Rex Burkhead and Sony Michel rotated evenly and were used liberally in formations, but Michel was a high draft pick, so time will tell. Burkhead did nothing of note against the Jags, as the Pats run game was dominated by the Jags defense.

2018 Week 1 vs HOU (18 / 64 / 0 rush, 3 / 1 / 5 / 0 rec)

Burkhead saw more snaps than expected due to an injury to Jeremy Hill, but wasn't able to produce much despite seeing 19 touches. His best run was a 12 yard scamper between a hole, and his day would have been much bigger if Tom Brady hadn't overthrown him for a TD on a pass route where he easily beat a linebacker. He also committed a fumble, but luckily the Pats recovered. Big days will be ahead if Hill's injury is serious.

More

Latest News

Patriots | Rex Burkhead back with nine touches (Sun Dec 2, 10:40 PM) - New England Patriots RB Rex Burkhead rushed seven times for 20 yards in Week 13 against the Minnesota Vikings and he added two catches for 21 yards.

link to story   

Patriots | Rex Burkhead activated (Mon Nov 26, 05:08 PM) - New England Patriots RB Rex Burkhead (neck) was activated from the Reserve/Injured list Monday, Nov. 26.

Our View: Neck injuries are tricky to come back from but the Patriots must feel good about his progress. Burkhead's return could take some snaps/touches away from Sony Michel and James White. He can play in Week 13 at home against the Vikings.
link to story   

New England Patriots Team Links

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Schedule

14@ Miami Dolphins
15@ Pittsburgh Steelers
16vs Buffalo Bills
17vs New York Jets