The New England Patriots released Mike Gillislee on Saturday in the great roster trimming. The team shrunk the roster, bringing it down to 53 players.
This put an end to the year-plus tenure for Mike Gillislee in Foxboro. Gillislee was in and out of the team, and he really struggled to find his footing in the team’s backfield only rushing for 50-yards twice in a matchup. This wasn’t even a factor down the stretch run to Super Bowl LII. Remember how Dion Lewis secured his spot as the lead back? That year Gillislee totaled 383 yards rushing on 3.68 yards per carry and five touchdowns.
The whole thing culminated with Gillislee’s release by the team on Saturday. He took to his Instagram account to say ‘goodbye.’
“Horses don’t stop, they keep going. Thank you New England,” Gillislee wrote.
Last offseason Gillislee inked a two-year contract worth $6.4 million with the New England Patriots as a restricted free agent. He also played with the Bills. Gillislee was one of the most efficient backs in the NFL while playing with the team. He averaged a league high 5.7 yards per carry in 2016. Unfortunately, this success never translated with the Patriots.
The team drafted Georgia running back Sony Michel with the No. 31 overall pick. Michel was considered a replacement for Dion Lewis, and was set to steal Gillislee’s opportunities.
The Patriots also re-signed Rex Burkhead and decided to bring in former second round pick Jeremy Hill. Burkhead will be used as a versatile back.
This is just one of the changes signed by head coach Bill Belichick, meaning that the Patriots are ready to do whatever it takes to create the winning formula. Do they have it now? Maybe this is the only way to win the Super Bowl. Creating a power-team.