The Patriots surprised a lot of people by using the second of their two first-rounders on Michel, but it suggests that they plan to hand him a significant role right away. Michel was dynamite in his final college season at Georgia, rushing for 1,227 yards and 16 touchdowns. He was sensational in two college playoff games, dropping 222 yards from scrimmage and four touchdowns on Oklahoma, then rushing 14 times for 98 yards against the vaunted Alabama defense. He might seem like a smaller back since he teamed with the bigger Nick Chubb in Athens, but Michel stands 5-11 and weighs 220 pounds. A two-year captain for the Bulldogs, Michel is a no-nonsense runner who makes quick decisions and gets up to top speed in a hurry.
Michel hasnít displayed excep-tional pass-catching skills, and he can be a little too straight-linish as a runner at times. Michel isnít going to displace James White on passing downs, and heíll have to compete with Rex Burkhead and others for early-down work.
Itís a good sign that such an astute franchise saw fit to spend a first-round pick on Michel. A potential lack of usage in the passing game could limit his upside, but heíll still have plenty of fantasy value if he becomes New Englandís primary early-down back.