If, at times, Ty Montgomery has felt like a square peg pushed toward a round role, or a round peg nudged in the direction of square role, he now feels there will be the chance to pair the peg request with the fitting assignment.
Montgomery, a third-round pick in 2015 who was drafted as a receiver but transitioned to running back for Green Bay, Baltimore and the Jets, signed with the New Orleans Saints on May 15.
"Speaking with my agent, this is just a perfect opportunity for someone in my position, who basically has kind of struggled a little bit in trying to find my niche and my role in offenses, being drafted as a receiver and then moving to running back," Montgomery said Monday. "Sort of being in different boxes and trying to figure out how to fit the best in an offense. I think the Saints offense gives me that.
"Obviously, guys like (running back) Alvin Kamara, they've shown what they can do with guys like him. (Quarterback) Taysom Hill, they've shown what they can do with guys like him. (And) other guys as well, over the years. Coach Sean Payton and his offense has been (known) for putting guys in the best positions to be successful and being very creative on offense."
Montgomery (6 feet, 216 pounds) has shown the ability to be versatile. In 58 career games, with 16 starts, he has run for 1,035 yards and seven touchdowns on 224 carries, caught 120 passes for 982 yards and three touchdowns, and returned 53 kickoffs for 1,158 yards.
"The initial switch wasn't frustrating," he said. "I guess at times what became frustrating is, I would be limited to third-and-longs, or screens and not even really a lot of runs. The runs and touches I would get would come at the end of games, either we're getting blown out or we're blowing out the other team. That's been a little frustrating, because I've been trying to find my role just to be able to help in any way I can."
Speaking to former teammates, and seeing how others have developed in New Orleans' offense, eased any possible concerns.
"Being someone who's from the outside looking in, talking with ex-teammates and whatnot, we just discussed how New Orleans would be a perfect fit for me," Montgomery said. "Because there's times where – I remember one year, it was (running back) Mark (Ingram) and Alvin. You couldn't really tell who was the starter. Both of those guys had a lot of production, easily over the 1,200 all-purpose yard mark.
"Taysom Hill, we were actually in Green Bay together (in training camp in 2017) and so I already knew what kind of athlete he was. So to see him thrive – catch balls, running the football and throwing the football – I was already pretty familiar with this offense and this offense putting guys in positions to win.
"Being with (former Saints tight end) Jimmy (Graham) in Green Bay (in 2018), he talked about it. Watching what (tight end) Jared Cook has been doing – we were in Green Bay together (in 2016). It's just a place where anybody can thrive, really."
Montgomery said the scouting reports, observation and familiar faces will accelerate his comfort level.
"Guys that can help me learn the New Orleans way of doing things," he said. "I'm just going to come in every day, go to work and try to enjoy the guys around me. I will say, it seems like it's a very fun atmosphere as well.
"I've never heard any bad things about New Orleans. Everybody says they love it. Training camp is hard, everybody works hard but everybody has fun and has fun playing the game. I'm excited for that."
Take a look at the newest addition to the New Orleans Saints roster, veteran running back Ty Montgomery.