Rookie RB Ridley helps Pats balance their offense



FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — After three weeks of Tom Brady’s record-setting passing, the Patriots finally put some balance into their offense.

And much of it came from a surprising source, rookie running back Stevan Ridley.

The third-round draft pick from LSU burst through holes then outraced defenders, gaining a team-high 97 yards on just 10 rushes in New England’s 31-19 win at the Oakland Raiders on Sunday. He ran 33 yards for a touchdown and picked up 20 and 25 yards on two other carries.

In college, he started just nine of the 39 games he played. Then he joined an offense led by a quarterback who was named unanimously as last season’s NFL most valuable player. This season, Brady set a league record for most yards passing in a three-game stretch with 1,327.