Patriots wield a surprise touchdown-scorer in fullback James Develin

Develin notched two Sunday.

James Develin
James Develin celebrates his touchdown with Shaq Mason. –Jim Davis/Globe Staff

Patriots fullback James Develin recorded the first two-touchdown game of his career Sunday afternoon against the Minnesota Vikings.

Capping a four-minute, eight-play drive to kick off the game, Develin got New England on the board first with a one-yard run into the end zone. The 30-year-old then followed that score up with a two-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to give the Patriots a two-possession lead, 24-10.

“Honestly, I’ve never dreamt about a game like this,” said Develin, who also caught one pass for nine yards. “This is the first time I’ve ever thought about it. I know my role, and that’s to get these other guys in the end zone, but it’s a really cool experience to get in myself. I’m thankful for the coaches having the confidence to call those plays.”


Develin, who entered the season with one career touchdown over the course of five seasons, now has three carries for four yards and three touchdowns in 2018.

“It’s awesome,” captain James White said. “Not many teams use a fullback across the league. We are one that does, and [James] makes plays for us, not just blocking.”

“He usually doesn’t get those,” added quarterback Tom Brady. “When he makes those plays, he gives us more and more confidence, so it’s pretty cool.”

While his teammates packed on the praise, Develin deflected any credit.

“It was awesome, though I really have to give all the props to the offensive line,” he said. “All I did was get the ball and follow those guys and fall forward. They did a really awesome job all game; they were paving open holes all game. Those guys are a bunch of dogs, and I’m blessed to work with them.”