Tom Brady was fired up before Thursday night’s game, which came one day removed from spending an entire day with Commissioner Roger Goodell as he continues battling his suspension.
He was likely hoping to go out there and have a big night against the Packers on his home turf, with fans chanting his name and cheering for the guy who won them a Super Bowl earlier this year.
The only problem is, he didn’t have guys like Julian Edelman, Rob Gronkowski, and Brandon LaFell to throw to, as well the fact he as without left tackle Nate Solder, all of which caused a little bit of a problem.
Also sidelined was receiver Aaron Dobson, leaving Brady with just receivers Josh Boyce and Brandon Gibson, who against a tough Packers defense wasn’t enough to let him pick them apart. To make matters worse, Green Bay kept Brady off the field, dominating in time of possession 12:19 to 2:41 during the first quarter while also getting some pressure on him.
That put the spotlight on Josh Boyce, who wasn’t able to get on the same page with the veteran after being targeted twice without a reception while Brady was in the game.
The star quarterback got a limited amount of work after being out there for just seven total plays, and entered the game on their first possession in a tough spot. Following the Packers’ first possession where they failed to convert on fourth down from the Patriots’ 2-yard line, Brady started his first drive backed up without a lot of room to work with. On his first pass he badly overthrew Boyce up the left sideline, and following a 2-yard gain by Jonas Gray he threw the third down pass a little too high where Boyce couldn’t quite come down with it to end the drive.
During their second possession he completed a 10-yard pass to Brandon Gibson on their first play, while from there he failed to convert on a third-down throw to Michael Hoomanwanui that killed the drive and ended up being his final play of the night.
The good news is it gave him the chance to get back on the field and get some reps while likely taking his mind off of what he had to sit through on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Garoppolo and Boyce had better chemistry, with the two already having a good rapport during training camp but they still struggled at times. Garoppolo underthrew him on one deep pass that they were fortunate wasn’t picked off, and on another tried to hit him on the back-shoulder but threw it too far inside, and the defender pulled it away and picked it off for an interception.
So it wasn’t a great night for the back-up, who showed he’s still got some work to do in his development. But more importantly Brady got some work and left healthy, which is all most fans should care about. For now they’ll have to regroup over and get back at it as they continue to work out the kinks as they start preparation for next week’s preseason game.
Posted Under: Patriots Commentary
Tags: 2015 NFL Preseason Jimmy Garoppolo Josh Boyce Michael Hoomanawanui Packers Patriots Tom Brady