The Jaguars (0-0) will open up the preseason against the defending Super Bowl champions on the road Thursday. The New England Patriots (0-0) hosted the Jacksonville squad for a pair of joint practices earlier this week. This year marks the 58th annual training camp for the Patriots, including their 15th consecutive camp at Gillette Stadium. Patriots vs Jaguars will be broadcast by the Preseason Week 1 NFL Network on Thursday, August 10 at 7:30 p.m. ET and can be seen in every New England state, as well as Alaska and Hawaii.
The preseason network’s flagship station is WBZ-TV CBS in Boston. WBZ-TV’s Dan Roche provides play-by-play and is joined by former Patriots tight end Christian Fauria in the broadcast booth. Former Patriots linebacker Matt Chatham will provide sideline analysis along with WBZ-TV’s Steve Burton. Patriots Football Weekly’s beat writers Paul Perillo and Andy Hart will also provide insight and analysis. New England Patriots’ Tom Brady reacts after officials reviewed a play during the second half of the NFL Super Bowl 51 football game against the Atlanta Falcons Sunday, Feb. 5, 2017, in Houston.
Patriots preseason schedule:
Thursday, Aug. 10, 7:30 p.m. Jacksonville Jaguars at New England Patriots
Saturday, Aug. 19, 8 p.m. New England Patriots at Houston Texans
Friday, Aug. 25, 7 p.m. New England Patriots at Detroit Lions
Thursday, Aug. 31, 7:30 p.m. New York Giants at New England Patriots
The New England Patriots (2-0) welcome the Jacksonville Jaguars (1-1) to Foxboro on Sunday in what is being pegged as one of the most lopsided contests of Week 3.Tight end Rob Gronkowski, left tackle Nate Solder, running back Mike Gillislee, and special teams ace Matthew Slater are unlikely to play, but that just opens the door for other players to make an impact.The New England Patriots are hosting the Jacksonville Jaguars in the first preseason game of 2017. We will have our first chance to see how all of the new toys fit into the roster, with running back Rex Burkhead, wide receiver Brandin Cooks, tight end Dwayne Allen, edge defenders Kony Ealy, Derek Rivers, and Deatrich Wise, linebackers David Harris and Harvey Langi, and cornerback Stephon Gilmore all potentially making their New England debut.
But how much will Brady play? Let’s look at Brady’s statlines from every preseason Week 1 since 2007 as a reference.
2016 – Did not play
2015 – 1-for-4 passing, 10 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs
2014 – Did not play
2013 – 7-for-8 passing, 65 yards, 1 TD, 0 INTs
2012 – 4-for-7 passing, 30 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs, 1 sack
2011 – Did not play
2010 – 5-for-8 passing, 67 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs
2009 – 10-for-15 passing, 100 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT
2008 – Did not play
2007 – 5-for-7 passing, 34 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs
Based on the past decade of work, Brady does not play much in preseason openers. If he does, he plays one or two series — maybe a quarter maximum — and then gets off the field for the backup to play. The only exception was 2009, when he was returning from ACL surgery. Perhaps it is worth noting that the only time Brady tore his ACL during the regular season came after a preseason that he did not play at all.
If this is the trend the Patriots have followed, one would assume there is a good chance Brady plays one or two series maximum in Thursday’s preseason game. He did not play at all in Week 1 last year at age 39, only played one series in 2015 at age 38, and did not play at all in 2014 at age 37. By that logic, there is a decent chance Brady does not play at all.
But what does that mean for Jimmy Garoppolo? The Patriots’ backup quarterback showed what he can do to the rest of the league in the first six quarters of last year’s regular season, and is widely considered the best backup quarterback in the league. Garoppolo is not exactly a proven commodity, but he does have an impressive track record.
Garoppolo has played a considerable amount in each of his three preseason openers, throwing at least 18 passes in each of the last two. But this year, with Garoppolo more seasoned and on the verge of a new contract, would the Patriots use this as an opportunity to get a look at third-stringer Jacoby Brissett?
Belichick did not want to talk about quarterback reps Tuesday morning.
“Yeah, we’ll make that decision later on in the week,” Belichick said. “I mean, right now, we’re just working on getting through this practice and tomorrow. You know, we’ll figure that out.”
Based on the way things have gone in the past and Garoppolo’s status as the backup quarterback, my guess would be that Brady plays one series (two if the first series goes poorly), and Garoppolo takes over for the remainder of the first half. Then, Jacoby Brissett gets the entirety of the second half with a team of players who will likely be on the fringe of the roster at best.
All we know for sure is that we won’t know anything until just before kickoff Thursday. Regardless of who is at quarterback, it’s exciting to have football back in Gillette Stadium this week.