View images of Vikings new RB Stevan Ridley from his days with the Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Buffalo Bills, New York Jets and New England Patriots.
The Vikings on Thursday announced the signing of running back Stevan Ridley.
Ridley, a third-round draft pick in 2011, played the first four seasons of his career for the New England Patriots and then the Jets in 2015 before spending time on a handful of rosters in 2016. Ridley was with the Broncos for the 2017 training camp and preseason before being released in early September.
Over his career, Ridley has started 26 of 62 games he's played and recorded 2,914 rushing yards and 22 touchdowns on 688 carries.
The Vikings signed Ridley after rookie running back Dalvin Cook suffered a season-ending knee injury against the Lions in Week 4. Cook was placed on injured reserve Thursday morning.
Here are five things to know about Ridley:
1. Leader at LSU
After redshirting in 2007 when LSU won the BCS National Championship, Ridley played three seasons for the Tigers. As a junior in 2010, he was named a permanent offensive team captain for the season and garnered lots of attention as the Tigers primary running back. After serving in a backup role in 2008 and 2009, Ridley hit the ground running in 2010, rushing for 1,147 yards and 15 touchdowns.
That season, Ridley earned first-team All-SEC honors from the league's coaches and second-team All-Conference recognition from the *Associated Press. *
Ridley finished his collegiate career with 1,419 yards and 18 touchdowns.
The 28-year-old joins two other LSU alumni, Danielle Hunter and rookie Tashawn Bower, on the Vikings roster.
2. Mississippi connection
Ridley hails from Natchez, Mississippi, where he attended Trinity Episcopal Day School.
He is the third member of the 2017 Vikings roster to call Mississippi home, joining Tom Johnson (Moss Point), Tramaine Brock, Sr., (Long Beach). Practice squad member Dylan Bradley (Macon) is also from Mississippi.
3. Productive as a Patriot
New England drafted Ridley 73rd overall in 2011, and he played all 16 games as a rookie. The most productive season of his career came in 2012, when he recorded 1,263 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns on 290 carries. Ridley also added six catches for 51 yards.
In four seasons as a Patriot, Ridley totaled 2,477 yards on 555 rushes and scored 20 rushing touchdowns during the regular season. He appeared in five playoff games for New England and scored three touchdowns. He was a member of the Patriots squad that defeated the Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX but was injured that October and out for the rest of the season.
4. High school honors
Ridley was a standout on the gridiron for Trinity Episcopal Day School, helping the Saints to a state championship in 2006.
He spent time on both sides of the ball, playing running back, fullback, quarterback and linebacker. As a senior in 2006, he racked up 3,089 rushing yards and 28 touchdowns and was named First-Team All-State by the *Clarion Ledger. *Ridley also passed for 627 yards, and he totaled 85 tackles as a linebacker.
5. Combine competitor
Ridley was invited to participate in the 2011 NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis.
He was listed as a top performer among running backs in the vertical jump (36 inches), long jump (9 feet, 10 inches) and the 3-cone drill, in which he ranked fourth with a time of 6.78 seconds.
Other running backs in Ridley's combine class included DeMarco Murray, Mark Ingram and Shane Vereen.