It’s really not quite that simple. The Pats have a v track record of a fantasy relevant RB, when they have one that’s actually good (and healthy). And often even when they don’t. Let’s start in 2007 (before this Dillion was always very relevant when healthy):
Maroney: 951 total yards and 6 TDs in 13 games before getting hurt.
Sammy Morris (took over as starter after when Maroney got hurt): 419 total yards and 3 TDs in 6 games (2 starts).
Morris: 888 total yards in 13 games
Green-Ellis: 312 yards and 5 TDs in 9 games (3 starts. Once again, the lead back misses time).
This year was admittedly a cluster f###. A bit of a transition year where no one could take the job.
Green Ellis: 1093 total yards and 13 TDs in 16 games.
Another transition year. For some reason Green-Ellis outsnapps Ridley even though Ridley is clearly the better back.
Here’s the only back on this list who was nearly as talented as Gillislee
1314 total yards and 12 TDs
Another cluster f###. Ridley loses favor due to fumbles. Both he and Blount get 700+ yards and 7 TDs. 3 RBs start games. Only one of them is any good.
Ridley gets hurt and no one else can win the job because none of them are good.
Lewis starts 6 games and looks like a star before getting hurt.
Blount eventually takes over and gains 750 yards and 7 TDs in 12 games (only 6 starts).
I think we know what Blount did here.
My point is this: they haven’t had a good running back that could stay healthy in a very long time. For the stretches they have, they’ve been very, very relevant.