Danny Woodhead is Benjamin Button

December, 29, 2010
12/29/10
12:26
PM ET
Players change when they become New England Patriots.

Just ask running back Danny Woodhead.

[+] EnlargeDanny Woodhead
AP Photo/Steven SennePint-sized running back Danny Woodhead has made a large impression for the Patriots this season.
He had trouble getting on the field for the New York Jets and was waived to make room for a reserve receiver who's no longer on the team.

The Patriots picked up Woodhead, and almost overnight he went from spare part to star. He's averaging 7.1 yards a run. He has five rushing touchdowns and another receiving.

But that's not all. The moment Woodhead joined the Patriots, he actually got shorter and younger.

He's a real-life Benjamin Button.

"I'll take it," Woodhead said with a laugh in the Ralph Wilson Stadium visitors' locker room Sunday. He ran for 93 yards and a touchdown and caught three passes for 32 yards in an easy victory over the Buffalo Bills.

Woodhead was a star at Division II Chadron State, but didn't get invited to the 2008 NFL scouting combine. That's where a lot of prospects first deliver their vital information to the league. Official heights and weights are established there.

Woodhead signed with the Jets as an undrafted free agent. He entered the NFL at 5-foot-9 and with a birth date of Dec. 3, 1983.

Since joining the Patriots, Woodhead has admitted he is 5-7 3/4. His real birth date is Jan. 25, 1985.

The height discrepancy supposedly came from the Jets because Chadron State rounded him off at 5-8 when he played there. Woodhead said he had "no clue" where the erroneous birthday, which finally was switched on NFL.com last week, came from.

Woodhead embraces the idea he looks like the kid who'll ask if you'd like to Super Size that Filet-O-Fish combo. Woodhead recently posed as a sporting goods salesman to push No. 39 jerseys on unsuspecting customers.

Maybe now he can revel in his youth a little longer.

Instead of being 27 already, he's still 25 for another month.

"I'm always going to be short. Might as well get shorter," Woodhead said. "Being younger, I'll take that as long as I can. When people think you look younger, that'll help you the rest of your life."

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