FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Two years ago, Dion Lewis, one of the new backs in town, unexpectedly knocked our socks off during the early camps, and later in training camp.

It was hard not to be drawn to him, and ultimately mesmerized by his jaw-dropping dekes and jukes. He was a revelation and game-changer, when he played.

That guy was missing last season, which followed ACL surgery on his left knee the previous year. That’s not to say he was terrible, but the Lewis who electrified crowds early in the 2015 season wasn’t quite there.

One of the biggest questions heading into this Patriots training camp, with respect to the running backs, was whether the old Lewis would return. While we haven’t seen him fake anyone out of their socks just yet with those nifty jump cuts, he has looked good the first few days.

Better still, the running back says he’s feeling as good as he did when he first arrived in Foxborough.

“I would say, it’s night and day, the way my knee feels now,” Lewis said. “It doesn’t even bother me no more. I kind of forget which knee it was.”

Lewis got into the first seven games during the 2015 season, and while technically the third-down back, he was much more than that. He was so effective, he was used on all downs. He averaged 4.8 yards per carry. He also caught 36 passes for 388 yards with four touchdowns.

If this is the player we’re going to see once again, if this is the back who shows up during the preseason, there’s no way he’s the odd man out in the Patriots’ crowded backfield. You don’t cut difference-makers.

And, did we forget to mention the Pats are 17-0 when Lewis is in the lineup?

Unless Coach Bill Belichick knows something we don’t about Lewis’ health, the 5-foot-8, 195-pound back isn’t going anywhere.

“Last year it was tough coming out every day, getting myself ready to go,” Lewis said. “It still went well, but I’m just trying to move onto this year. And this year I feel great. I’m still building. I’m still getting stronger and faster. I still got stuff to show. It should be exciting.”

In 2016, he was less than a year removed from ACL surgery, not to mention a second procedure on top of that in August before training camp. Lewis didn’t have that same shiftiness and explosiveness that made him special. He started the year on the physically-unable-to-perform list before being taken off in November.

“Even if it’s just mental, when you go through that surgery, and rebuilding, and starting over, it takes a little time to get back to where you were,” running backs coach Ivan Fears said recently. “I’m looking forward to seeing what he’s going to do this year.”

Fears was pleased to see how well Lewis looked heading into training camp, and how much better and freer he was moving.

Lewis did have a few shining moments last year, most notably in the divisional round playoff win over the Texans. It was a one-man Dion Lewis show that day, as he became the first player in NFL postseason history to have a running touchdown, a receiving touchdown and return a kickoff for a touchdown in a game.

But in his limited regular-season appearances (seven games), he was rather ordinary with 17 catches for 94 yards, and a 4.4-yard rushing average and no touchdowns.

Lewis has heard some of the rumblings about him being cut. It just motivates him to prove he’s still the same back he was two years ago.

“I’m always confident. I know what type of player I am. I’m going to come out and show it every day. That’s what I’m going to do,” he said. “We have a lot of great running backs, and they’re great guys as well. Competition’s great. That’s when you show who you really are.”

And right now, according to the man himself, Lewis feels so much better about his left knee.

Compared with last year, it’s night and day.