Bill Belichick happy with the versatility Ty Montgomery brings to the Patriots


Montgomery missed most of last season with an injury.

Bill Belichick is happy to have Ty Montgomery available offensively. (Winslow Townson/AP Images for Panini)

The beginning of Ty Montgomery’s Patriots tenure didn’t go the way anybody hoped it would. But in New England’s 2023 season opener, Montgomery’s receiver-running back hybrid role finally began taking focus.

Although Montgomery’s offensive usage was rather low against the Eagles, he showed comfortability at different spots on the field. In just seven snaps on offense, he lined up outside the numbers, in the slot, and in the backfield.

On Sunday, Montgomery recorded one rush for seven yards, two catches for nine yards, and returned two kicks for a combined 62 yards, including a 43-yard scamper. He played 41 percent of the Patriots special teams snaps.

“He’s great to have. A very versatile guy, really smart,” New England coach Bill Belichick said of Montgomery. “He’s got a great skill set, plays in the kicking game, can do more things offensively. … It’s good to have that kind of versatility.”

The Patriots signed Montgomery in 2022, but he only played one game before an injury sidelined him for the rest of the season. A second injury kept him out of most of training camp and all of New England’s preseason games. But, after a brief stint on the practice squad, Montgomery signed to the Patriots 53-man roster just before the season opener.

It’s unlikely Montgomery will play a big role in the ground game. New England handed Rhamondre Stevenson the majority of the workload at running back while mixing in Ezekiel Elliott as the No. 2 option. Still, Montgomery can provide depth behind the duo while also mixing in with the receiving group.

Perhaps Montgomery’s most intriguing upside is his ability to scramble defensive packages. If teams don’t know whether to account for him as a running back or a receiver, it can create mismatches.

One of Montgomery’s best plays of the season opener came while he was lined up in the slot and covered by a linebacker. Montgomery gained separation on the play and caught a pass for 11 yards.

A healthy Montgomery won’t necessarily be an offensive mainstay, but he can be an important gadget player for the Patriots.

“[Montgomery] has been able to get in a couple great weeks of work. I’m glad we have him back on the field to work with,” Belichick said.