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New England Patriots: 3 Losers From First Preseason Game

Patriots take win in first preseason game since 2019.

Isaiah Wynn #76 of the New England Patriots

The New England Patriots first preseason game of the season is officially in the books, with the team picking up a solid 22-13 victory over the Washington Football Team. It was great to see the team back in action in a game setting, and making it even better was the return of fans to Gillette Stadium to watch the action unfold.

For the most part, there was a lot of good that came from the preseason opener. The offense was able to move the ball pretty consistently for the most part, regardless of who was under center, and the defense did a good job of shutting down Washingtons offense.

Even in victory however, there are always plays that could have been run better or players that could have run them better. Even in a relatively low stakes contest such as Thursday nights, that was certainly still the case.


While preseason games are ultimately unimportant to the outcome of the season, they are vital for players attempting to make the final cut. We already took a look at two players who were the stars of the game, but now its time to take a look on the other side of the fence. Here are three players who came out of the first preseason contest as losers.

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The Patriots do have the advantage of an experienced coaching staff on their side, as head coach Bill Belichick owns a 47-36 career preseason record. Compare that with Nick Sirianni, the former Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator who started his tenure as Philadelphias head coach with a preseason loss to the Steelers last week. Past performances dont guarantee future results, however, and the Eagles could turn things around with a home win this evening.

If you are looking for assistance picking tonights game, youve come to the right place. Below you can find a betting preview and prediction for the Patriots at Eaglesmatchup. Before getting to the against the spread pick, have a look at a viewing guide for Week 2 of the NFL preseason, which includes the start time, TV channel and updated odds for not only Philadelphia vs. New England, but every game on tap this weekend.

Official Website Of The New England Patriots

WEEK 2· Sat 09/10· FINAL

WEEK 3· Sun 09/18· FINAL


WEEK 4· Sun 09/25· FINAL

WEEK 5· Sun 10/02· FINAL

WEEK 6· Sat 10/08· FINAL

WEEK 8· Sun 10/23· FINAL

WEEK 9· Sun 10/30· FINAL


WEEK 10· Sun 11/06· FINAL

WEEK 11· Sun 11/13· FINAL

WEEK 12· Sun 11/20· FINAL

WEEK 13· Sun 11/27· FINAL

WEEK 14· Sun 12/04· FINAL


WEEK 15· Sun 12/11· FINAL

WEEK 16· Sat 12/17· FINAL

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Cam Newton’s Night Ends After Two Series

In their first preseason game of the year, Cam Newton started for the Patriots and played two series before his night was over.

Newton finished the game 4-of-7 for 49 yards. He put together one drive after a difficult start on Thursday night.


After Damien Harriss 2-yard run on first down, Newton was under pressure on his next two snaps as both pass attempts fell incomplete. His second pass attempt, on third down, nearly looked like a fumble after he was hit by Chase Young, but officials ruled it an incomplete pass. Young beat Patriots left tackle Isaiah Wynn quickly on the play, which is why Newton had no time to look for his intended target.

The Patriots had more success on the second drive. Newton started this series off with an 11-yard pass to Jakobi Meyers. After back-to-back runs by Harris, Newton picked up two more first downs by hitting Jonnu Smith and James White . Momentum was halted after that when Smith was flagged for holding. The Pats were stranded at the Washington 16-yard line, following Newton missing White on a screen pass.

Rookie kicker Quinn Nordin finished the drive with a 35-yard field goal at 3:16 of the first quarter.

Mac Joness Best Throw You Might Have Missed

New England Patriots: 3 losers from first preseason game

Eventually, Jones is going to hit on one of these deep balls to a Patriots receiver. Truthfully, it might have to be Nelson Agholor, because reserves like Kristian Wilkerson and NKeal Harry havent gotten it done for him.

In the meantime, there are plenty of other throws the first-round pick makes that Patriots fans can salivate over.


One play in particular from Thursday night stands out from Jones, and its notable because it showcases his ability to thrive as a strictly pocket-passer.

On 2nd-and-7 inside Eagles territory early in the third quarter, Jones dropped back to pass against what looks like a Cover 2 look two deep safeties with cornerbacks playing as extra flat defenders.

The Patriots run somewhat of a similar concept to the aforementioned Newton completion to Meyers: a running back comes into the flat to try and occupy underneath defenders while outside receiver Gunner Olszewski sits down on a hitch route. Joness challenge here is the same: get the flat defender, Michael Jacquet to bite on J.J. Taylor long enough to open up a window for Olszewski.

Mac Jones on a frozen rope

PFF

While thats happening, though, right guard Marcus Martin is getting smoked by T.Y. McGill, who storms through and forces Jones to step up. McGill even gets his hand on the football.

This play is notable because Jones actually fumbled in a ball security drill a few weeks ago in practice that simulated this exact situation and had to run a lap as punishment.


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Taylor Heinicke Vs Mac Jones

Both Washington and New England are holding quarterback competitions in training camp, but the starter is likely decided already, With veterans Cam Newton and Ryan Fitzpatrick projected to start. the Washington Football Team vs Patriots game all comes down to the backups and a potentially lingering competition in New England.

Mac Jones, the No. 15 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, is generating rave reviews this summer. Hell be QB2 behind Newton to open the preseason. Meanwhile, Taylor Heinicke is coming off a stunning performance in the NFC Wild Card Game that earned him a lucrative extension.

  • Heir to the throne: The Patriots waited more than a year to find their Tom Brady successor and their patience might pay off. Jones, who led college football with an 84.2% adjusted completion rate last season is already displaying starting-caliber qualities in New England.
  • Heinicke Time?: Against the top team in Sportsnauts NFL defense rankings, Heinicke threw for 306 yards and scored two touchdowns in a 31-23 playoff loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Washington is giving him a shot to win the starting job this summer.

Advantage: New England Patriots

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Mike Reiss Espn Staff Writer

The Patriots continue to explore free-agent CB options, working out veteran D.J. Hayden on Friday. The 5-foot-11, 190-ound Hayden entered the NFL as a first-round pick of the Raiders in 2013, and has also been with the Lions and Jaguars . With top slot CB Jonathan Jones banged up and already ruled out of Sunday’s game against the Jets, the club is eyeing possible reinforcements.

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New England Patriots Loser No : Nkeal Harry

Fresh off one of the more impressive training camps this season, NKeal Harry had certainly raised expectations for himself heading into this first preseason contest. Thats why it was disappointing to see him log just one catch for a meager four yards.

This all goes without saying that Harry logged 36 snaps on the night, which was the fourth highest on the offense and most for a non-lineman. Its not as if Harry wasnt on the field much, because he was. Its just that once again, he failed to live up to expectations.

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Admittedly, the stakes were relatively low here considering its just a preseason game. But even after a successful training camp, it feels like nothing has changed in regards to Harry. His official trade request a few months back painted the picture of a wide receiver who believes he hasnt been given a fair shot, but he continually goes out and posts duds like he did on Thursday.


On the other hand, we have Kristian Wilkerson who led all receivers with six catches for 39 yards. He did drop a beautiful pass from Mac Jones, but he did a great job of getting himself open, and seemingly made himself Jones go to guy.

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Patriots Fans Excited For First Preseason Game

A moment of adversity came up right away for the rookie quarterback in his first offensive series.

His low second-down throw to Jakobi Meyers looked like it was caught, but officials ruled the pass incomplete, taking away a first-down play and setting up a 3rd-and-5.

How did the first-round pick respond? By sticking a well-timed comeback route right into Kristian Wilkersons gut for a first down along the left sideline.

.’ first completion as a pro goes for a first down!: #WASvsNE on

NFL

But the young man wasnt done slinging it yet.

His next throw was nothing less than perfection: a snappy play-action throw on an in-breaking route to Kendrick Bourne layered between the linebackers and the secondary. Thats a pretty high-level throw for a guy whos playing against another NFL team for the first time.

Then, he launched a beautiful second-down deep ball down the left sideline for Wilkerson that the second-year receiver couldnt quite haul in against solid downfield coverage. If hed hit that, Gillette might have broken the sound barrier.

Still, there was a little room for improvement, as should be expected from a rookie.

His last toss of his first drive was rushed and off-target to Bourne, falling incomplete and forcing the Patriots to kick a field goal.

The next play, he climbed the pocket nicely but couldnt escape a closing pass rush to pick up a first down on 3rd-and-short thats an example of a play Newton might be able to convert with his legs.

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Kyle Dugger Is Still Improving In Coverage

As exciting as the second-year safetys future prospects are, one thing continually seems to trouble him: covering receivers down the field.

That issue appeared to arise once more on Washingtons second drive of the game when Ryan Fitzpatrick hit tight end Logan Thomas for a big 3rd-down conversion against Dugger on a corner route.

On one hand, you have to tip your hat a bit to the throw by Fitzpatrick, which was well-placed toward Thomas back shoulder. That would be a tough play for a lot of good coverage guys to make.

But Dugger also doesnt do a great job of locating the football as he runs stride-for-stride with the tight end, making it impossible for him to play the ball before it arrives. Thats something hes struggled with in training camp as well when running with receivers down the field in coverage, leading him to get beaten at times despite having decent position.

For starters, Dugger played tight end Temarrick Hemingways corner route perfectly, keeping underneath leverage on the route while knowing he had Bryants help over the top. He then flips to find the football and disrupts the catch.

The young safety is best in coverage, however, when the ball is in front of him. Two plays after the Thomas catch, he came up to tackle the speedy McLaurin on a short out route, wrapping him up for a minimal gain. Give him a chance to drive downhill on the ball, and youll see those eye-popping physical skills and aggressive hitting style come out to play.

Upon Further Review: Another Look At The Patriots First Preseason Game

Reacting to football games, including the Patriots first preseason game, in real-time almost always means youre not getting the full picture. There are so many moving parts to each play that its hard to truly take stock of a single snap, let alone a whole performance, without a second look.

The buzz about Mac Joness strong command of the Patriots offense during his first real NFL action has people already writing the obituaries on Cam Newtons time as the Patriots starter.

While that time will come inevitably, Newtons Week 1 performance might not merit such action just yet.

But one thing that does need to happen for the Patriots? Getting their best defensive player, Stephon Gilmore, happy and back on the field. Because this defense may be in some trouble down the line if that doesnt happen.

Here are a few extra observations after a second look at Thursday nights preseason action.

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How To Watch New England Patriots Vs Philadelphia Eagles

Kickoff for the New England Patriots vs. Philadelphia Eagles game is set for Aug. 19 at 7:30 p.m. ET. It is the only NFL preseason game scheduled for Aug. 19 and will be available to watch across the country on NFL Network.

NFL Network is a cable channel, meaning that youll need either a cable or streaming subscription that includes the NFL Network to be able to watch the game on TV. Streaming options include Fubo TV, YouTube TV, Sling TV and the recently added Hulu with Live TV. Sling TV is the cheapest option, with the NFL Network being available with the Sling TV Blue package, which costs $35 per month and offers 43 total channels. To get the full lineup of Sling TV channels, you add the Sling TV Orange package with Blue for a monthly total of $50.

Live streams of NFL games are also available through NFL.com and the NFL app, but you will need to authenticate that you are subscribed to a service that has NFL Network.

For fans in New England and Philadelphia, the games may actually appear on regional sports networks, so be sure to check local listings to ensure where the game will be available.

NFL preseason action can be viewed from anywhere in the world if you use the proper tools, in this case a virtual private network . A VPN is designed to route network traffic through a specific set of servers in a specific country, allowing viewers to watch content on an encrypted feed over a computer.

And it’s a great way to keep up with action from anywhere in the world.View Deal

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New England Patriots Preseason Game 2 Defense Analysis

4. Mac Jones is still ascending

Mac Jones entered his first NFL game to the sounds of the stadium applauding and cheering for him. He wasnt spectacular, but he wasnt bad either. Jones did show pocket presence and timing that Patriots fans have yet to see with Cam Newton as the starter.

Jones finished the game 13-of-19 for 87 yards. While he wasnt flashy, he did have his moments. Jones should have also thrown for a touchdown, but one of his best passes of the night was dropped by Kristian Wilkerson.

Jones led the Patriots offense on two field-goal drives. For a team that most likely plans on leaning on the running game and the defense, this was not a bad first night. More importantly, Jones was able to start his first series with the first-team offense.

While Jones did not do enough in the first game to steal the job away from Cam Newton, he may have still shown enough to continue to get first-team snaps in practices this week. This is important because the upcoming week will feature the teams first joint practices when the Patriots travel to Philadelphia.

3. Running back depth is real

The Patriots may not have a dynamic running back duo like the Cleveland Browns, but Thursday night proved that the teams perceived running back depth is real. From top to bottom, the Patriots have a solid group of running backs.

2. NKeal Harry made his life more difficult

1. Matt Judon and the Patriots have been a good match

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All The Highlights From The Patriots

The New England Patriots take on the New Orleans Saints in a preseason game at Gillette Stadium on Thursday, August 11, 2016.

New England Patriots quarterbacks Jimmy Garoppolo and Jacoby Brissett take the field before a preseason NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016, in Foxborough, Mass.

New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski strikes a pose before a preseason NFL football game between the Patriots and the New Orleans Saints on Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016, in Foxborough, Mass.

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, left, speaks to Sean Payton before a preseason NFL football game Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016, in Foxborough, Mass.

New England Patriots quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo warms up before the team’s preseason NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints on Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016, in Foxborough, Mass.

New England Patriots fullback James Develin and tight end Rob Gronkowski warm up before a preseason NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016, in Foxborough, Mass.

New England Patriots quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo signals a score during the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016, in Foxborough, Mass.

Sports agent Drew Rosenhaus, left, speaks with New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski on the sideline before a preseason NFL football game between the Patriots and the New Orleans Saints Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016, in Foxborough, Mass.

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