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Ridley understands benching after “sickening” fumble

Stevan Ridley AP

As thrilling as their overtime comeback win over the Broncos was, not every Patriots player was able to fully enjoy it.

Benched again after an early fumble, running back Stevan Ridley was finding a hard time finding consolation.

“It’s really about the team and how they came back from this deficit tonight,” Ridley said, via Tom Curran of CSNNE.com. “We were down 24 points and we fought back. Our team deserves better than what I’m putting out there on the field. That’s consecutive weeks with the ball on the ground and as a running back, you can’t do it. I’ve said that multiple times but I work too hard to go out there and make the small mistakes that keep setting myself back and setting this team back.”

The Patriots might not have needed to be so dramatic if not for their talented back’s continued inability to hang onto the ball — it was his third fumble in three games. He came back after a brief exile last Monday against the Panthers, but didn’t last night.

He was immediately replaced by LeGarrette Blount, who also coughed it up, but down the stretch it was Brandon Bolden and Shane Vereen carrying the mail.

To his credit, Ridley understands.

“The offense leans on me to go in there and get the job done and when I put the ball on the ground, they have no option but to take me out,” he said. “It’s sickening man. I’m frustrated. But it’s part of the game. As a player you have to stay focused and keep your eye on the prize at the end of the day. I’m not gonna get too down. I’m gonna put more pressure on myself to go out there in practice and try to change up some things. I can’t keep doing this. It’s sickening.”

The Patriots have rescued backs from fumbling issues before (Kevin Faulk), so Ridley’s not a lost cause. But in a year when their lack of downfield passing targets has forced them to play it a little closer to the vest than they have in the past, they don’t have time to develop confidence right now.

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12 Responses to “Ridley understands benching after “sickening” fumble”
  1. bricketh says: Nov 25, 2013 8:26 AM

    WWTD = What Would Tiki Do? Tiki managed to solve his fumbling woes under Coughlin somehow after making a living off of giving the ball away…he changed the way he held it…don’t remember the specifics, but it seemed to make a huge difference in his ability to secure the ball, and the once reliable turnover-ability from the former Giants RB found its way to the younger Manning.

  2. CKL says: Nov 25, 2013 8:30 AM

    I just felt sick watching that ball squirting away from him like a bar of soap. The thing I hate most is that he’s so talented plus he works hard and is a team guy. It’s not like he’s some marginal player. But turnovers can make you marginal despite talent and hard work. I really hope he gets this straightened
    out.

  3. Chuck Norris says: Nov 25, 2013 8:53 AM

    Does he understand??? Or is he just giving the “correct” answer? Because if he did understand, I dont think he would have been benched for the 5th time this year for fumbles.

    He was carving up the Denver defense until he got sloppy and went for a careless spin move. Secure the damn ball before you get traded to Jacksonville.

  4. wiley16350 says: Nov 25, 2013 8:55 AM

    It sucks, Ridley is a very talented running back. For whatever reason he just fumbles all the time. I keep holding out hope that he gets it fixed before it’s too late, but even I’m losing patience as he fumbles week in and week out.

  5. xxsweepthelegxx says: Nov 25, 2013 9:01 AM

    I wanted him in street clothes for the rest of the game after that fumble, not gonna lie.

    I remember the frustration with Faulk too earlier in his career. Ridley is a different runner than Faulk, but I hope he finds some Tiki Barber/Kevin Faulk magic sooner rather than later

  6. pastabelly says: Nov 25, 2013 9:09 AM

    It wouldn’t bother me if he never played another down as a Patriot and Shane Vereen is twice the all around player that Ridley is.

  7. harrisonhits2 says: Nov 25, 2013 9:45 AM

    Us Pats fans have now started referring to fumbles as “Ridleys”.

    Very disappointing. There are times when I miss BJGE and his never fumbling even though he wasn’t explosive like Ridley is.

  8. 6ball says: Nov 25, 2013 10:59 AM

    .

    In hell Tony Romo is your QB and Ridley is your RB.

    .

  9. sidelineshot says: Nov 25, 2013 11:05 AM

    Ridley can’t chew and walk at the same time.
    That ball always seems to be outside his core.
    Too bad.

  10. weepingjebus says: Nov 25, 2013 11:55 AM

    Yes, Tiki went from holding it normally to doing this loaf of bread carry thing where he’d hold it sideways tight against his chest. Looks silly but it definitely worked.

  11. soundsofsuccess7 says: Nov 25, 2013 1:29 PM

    I would take Ridley and an occasional fumble over Brandon Bolden and LaGarrette Blount any day. Vereen is solid but those two are awful.

  12. fearthehoody says: Nov 25, 2013 5:51 PM

    Wouldn’t miss Ridley if he was cut this second! Of course that would mean he’d be a Jet an hour later

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