Could Bolden pull a Green-Ellis?

May, 11, 2012
5/11/12
2:02
PM ET
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- In 2008, the Patriots signed an undrafted rookie running back from Mississippi who later emerged as their top rusher. BenJarvus Green-Ellis’ emergence was impressive.

[+] EnlargeBrandon Bolden
Jim Rogash/Getty ImagesUndrafted free-agent running back Brandon Bolden hopes to follow in BenJarvus Green-Ellis' footsteps.
Could Brandon Bolden duplicate it?

That was a storyline reporters pursued as Bolden – the undrafted rookie free-agent from Ole Miss – met with the press on Friday. Of the seven rookies signed by the Patriots after the draft, Bolden stands out because he was considered talented enough to be picked.

The 5-foot-10 7/8 and 222-pound Bolden was a physical inside runner at Mississippi, his best season coming in 2010 when he totaled 976 yards and 10 touchdowns. At the same time, the Pro Football Weekly draft preview said he “is immature and needs to learn what it means to be a pro. Character needs to be investigated.”

When asked how he’d respond to that assessment of his character, Bolden fired back, “Come investigate it.”

As for his Ole Miss connection with Green-Ellis, Bolden noted that they didn’t cross paths in Oxford.

“Ben was at Ole Miss for the four years before I got there. He’s a great guy, great running back, I watched a lot of film of him,” he said. “He was walking out the door as I was coming in.”

If Bolden beats the odds and makes the Patriots’ roster, it could be déjà vu all over again – this time in New England.

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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