Running back Danny Woodhead has agreed to a two-year contract with the San Diego Chargers, leaving the New England Patriots after three productive seasons. The Chargers announced the deal on Friday afternoon. The 5-foot-8, 200-pound Woodhead served as the Patriots’ “passing” back, which is an integral role in the team’s offense because of how often they are in spread formations.
Woodhead played in 34 percent of the offensive snaps last season, totaling 76 carries for 301 yards and four touchdowns while adding 40 receptions for 446 yards and three touchdowns. The Patriots signed Woodhead in 2010, scooping him up from the rival New York Jets when they had a rash of injuries at running back. He quickly emerged as a reliable presence and one of the team’s fan favorites over the next three seasons. The Patriots have Stevan Ridley and Shane Vereen returning atop their running back depth chart, with Vereen — a 2011 second-round draft choice out of Cal — the likely top option to fill Woodhead’s duties. Second-year players Brandon Bolden and Jeff Demps are also on the depth chart, with veteran Leon Washington expected to be primarily a kickoff returner. In Ken Whisenhunt’s offense with the Chargers, Woodhead will now be the complement to Ryan Mathews.