FOXBORO — The Patriots opened the preseason with a 22-13 win over the Washington Football Team. Here’s a recap of the action:
Cam Newton went three and out in his first drive, but found a rhythm in his second drive. Newton was able to connect with James White (2 REC, 22 YDS), Jonnu Smith (16 YDS), and Jakobi Meyers (11 YDS). An incomplete screen pass that James White dropped led to a field goal from Quinn Nordin.
Mac Jones took over in the third drive, and after an incomplete pass, he found Kristian Wilkerson for a first down to end the first quarter. On the very next play he threw a dot to Kendrick Bourne for another first.
Jones tried to find Wilkerson in the end zone for a 34-yard touchdown, but it was dropped after he was well contested. Jones hurled an incomplete pass to Bourne on third down, but Nordin knocked his second field goal of the day with a 50-yarder to make it 6-0 two and a half minutes into the second quarter.
Wilkerson had another reception from Jones to start the fourth drive, tallying an eight yard reception before Jones found Jakub Johnson for a five-yard catch. On 3rd and 2, Jones ran into some pressure and tried to escape the pocket but came up short only mustering one yard, forcing New England to punt with 3:23 left in the second quarter.
To start the second half, the Pats went in hurry up offense to practice situation offense. He connected with J.J. Taylor and N’Keal Harry before finding Wilkerson three times. To go along with the exceptional passing from the former Alabama QB, Taylor was responsible for a major part of the yards on the ground in their fifth drive.
Jones found Wilkerson yet again to put them at the Washington 22, but on third down he was unable to connect with him to set up another field goal for Nordin, in which he connected on the 40-yarder to put New England up 9-7 to start the third quarter.
Jones led the team out for his fourth series, but it was a three-and-out after three rushes — two from fourth-round pick Rhamondre Stevenson and one from Sony Michel.
Jones was brought out for his fifth series, and made a good throw on first down despite being hit hard, but the throw was dropped by Wilkerson. It was a poor drive for interior o-lineman Alex Redmond (sack allowed) and Marcus Martin (false start), as the rookie tried to find Gunner Olszewski deep down field but it was overthrown by a notch to give the Patriots another punt.
An interception put the Patriots in good field position, as Brian Hoyer got his first drive. But it was the ground game that put them in the end zone, as Stevenson tallied 24 yards through five rushes as he got into the end zone for a one-yard touchdown which put the Pats up 15-7. Nordin, who had been stellar on field goals all night, missed the extra point to keep it a one-possession game.
For the eighth drive, and Hoyer’s second, Hoyer found Isaiah Zuber for a short pass before Stevenson picked up the first. On first down, Hoyer attempted to go deep to Zuber but the pass ended up being too far away from Zuber. A Stevenson four-yard and a five-yard pass to Taylor wasn’t enough, as the Patriots ended up punting.
With 1:26 left in the affair, Hoyer and the Patriots went out for what most consider “garbage time.”
But Stevenson took it 91 yards to the end zone for a touchdown, as they padded their lead and made it 22-13 as Nordin converted the extra point.
- QB Cam Newton: 4-7, 49 YDS
- QB Mac Jones: 13-19, 87 YDS
- QB Brian Hoyer: 2-4, 14 YDS
- RB Rhamondre Stevenson: 10 CAR, 127 YDS, 2TD
- RB Sony Michel: 6 CAR, 26 YDS
- RB Damien Harris: 4 CAR, 17 YDS
- RB J.J. Taylor: 2 CAR, 10 YDS — 5 REC, 31 YDS
- RB James White: 2 REC, 22 YDS
- FB Jakub Johnson: 1 REC, 5 YDS
- WR Kristian Wilkerson: 6 REC, 39 YDS
- WR Kendrick Bourne: 1 REC, 13 YDS
- WR Jakobi Meyers: 1 REC, 11 YDS
- WR Isaiah Zuber: 1 REC, 9 YDS
- WR N’Keal Harry: 1 REC, 4 YDS
- TE Jonnu Smith: 1 REC, 16 YDS
The defense limited the Football Team Thursday night to just seven points, as Ryan Fitzpatrick, Steven Montez and Taylor Heinicke had no answer for New England’s revamped pass rush.
WFT punted on five of their nine drives, as they missed two field goals before a tipped pass led to a Joejuan Williams interception in the early stages of the fourth. Defensive end Ronnie Perkins, the third-round pick, took a major role in the interception forcing Montez to go under pressure and make a poor throw.
Montez lead the WFT to the end zone with just minutes left in the ballgame in order to make it 15-13, but they were not able to complete the two-point conversion after they reviewed it. It was originally caught and called a conversion, but Williams poked the ball out at the very end of the play in which they called it incomplete after review.
- Recently signed Malik Gant broke up several passes and even stopped a touchdown in the second quarter, looked very strong
- Free agent signing Matt Judon was a force in the pass rush through his limited time on the field
- Josh Uche suffered a small injury during the second quarter but returned in the third quarter
- Third-round pick DT Ronnie Perkins was solid in his debut, rushing the passer well on several plays
- Myles Bryant sustained a shoulder injury after making a tackle, but seemed to be alright as he got up and jogged to the sidelines — may have just had the wind knocked out of him
- Joejuan Williams was the MVP of the day after his two crucial plays
(Photo by Kathryn Riley/Getty Images)