Can Lions’ LeGarrette Blount have another ‘legendary’ Thanksgiving?

By Matt Schoch
Special to The Detroit News
LeGarrette Blount

Allen Park – LeGarrette Blount said he used to be tough to bring down on Thanksgivings past at the local church yard in Florida’s panhandle.

“Legendary,” he said. “If you ask the guys I played football with back when I was growing up around this time man, they probably have some pretty funny stories.”

He might get plenty of chances Thursday to prove he’s still got it.

With Kerryon Johnson possibly on the sidelines with a sprained knee, the veteran running back Blount could be in line for a crucial role against the Bears. Blount, who turns 32 on Dec. 5, would do well to turn back to the clock to the Perry, Fla., days.

It could turn his quiet season around and also propel the Lions the heights he’s used to in previous seasons.

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“Not the best,” Blount said Tuesday, when asked to size up how his season has gone. “It’s not really as productive as I’ve wanted it to be.

“At the end of the day, you have to strap it up and go play football, you can’t live in the past. I’m just moving on.”

Blount has won the last two Super Bowls for New England and Philadelphia, but has averaged a career-low 2.3 yards per carry this season, 1.4 yards below his previous worst.

In the last four games, he has 21 carries and 16 yards, and on the season he has 183 yards.

“Whatever it is, I feel like me, Jim Bob (Cooter) and Matty (Patricia), we just have to figure it out,” Blount said of his offensive coordinator and head coach. “I want to figure it out. We’re just going to keep on looking and see what it is, and whenever we see whatever it is that’s not making it happen – whether it’s me, whether it’s whatever it is, I’m sure I’ll fix it or they’ll fix it.”

The Lions could need four quarters out of him in a running back rotation with Theo Riddick and Zach Zenner. His season-high is 16 carries against New England, and the Lions have won all three games where he has had double-digit carries.

Back home, Blount said Thanksgiving turns into a weekend-long affair, until all the food is gone, including his favorite dish of mac and cheese.

“I could eat that … even if it’s going bad, I’d probably still eat it,” Blount said. “Unless I see some mold on it, it’s probably going to get eaten.”

Not running lately with his trademark physical style, Blount is out to prove he’s still a worthy option for a heavy load. He’s gained over 6,000 yards over nine seasons, netting 4.3 per carry.

“I don’t know, we’ll see. I can’t really predict the future, but hopefully it’s good,” Blount said. “I think that we should do whatever it takes for us to win the game.”

Matt Schoch is a freelance writer.