Concern for Isaiah Bolden
Never mind the results of the game, the Patriots rookie 7th round pick, and cornerback collided with teammate LB Calvin Munson and sustained a head/neck injury. Bolden lay motionless on the ground for minutes before the medical team brought out a spine board and strapped him to it before carting him off. At this point, Bill Belichick in consultation with Green Bay coach Matt LaFleur petitioned the league to stop the game and the league concurred. The game was suspended with 10:29 remaining and the Patriots leading 21-17.
According to Evan Lazar’s X-post, Belichick: “We’re all saying a prayer for Isaiah … I appreciate the way the league handled it. It was the right thing to do.”
Matthew Slater “I really appreciate what Coach Belichick did tonight. He took the initiative on that. … I think Coach made the right decision. That was tremendous leadership by him. I have to say, honestly, that was one of the proudest moments I’ve had as a guy that’s played for him now for 16 years, to see what he did. There was no hesitation.”
The Patriots released an update at 8 AM Sunday stating that Bolden was released from the hospital and will be returning with the team today to Foxboro. The Patriots also announced they have canceled the joint practice with Tennessee next week and will fly to Nashville on Thursday for the Friday night 8:00 game.
Slater went out of his way to praise the Green Bay team leadership and particularly CB Rasul Douglas. That was significant because Douglas instigated a shoving match before the game with Kyle Dugger and other DBs as the Patriots ran by the Green Bay bench area. Douglas bumped Dugger as he and the DBs ran by. It was shown by WBZ as part of their Pre-game show.
Patriots win 21 -17
Former Patriots inside linebacker and now radio talk show host at 98.5 The Sports Hub, Ted Johnson was highly critical of the 1st team’s defense. “The Patriots have so many hybrid safeties/linebackers to combat the high-powered offenses passing attack. If they are a legit Top 5 defense, they have to be a heck of a lot better than they’ve been in recent years at stopping the run.
The Patriots’ defensive performance tonight was low-key kind of troubling. Too many safeties in the box getting blocked and driven down. The vaunted D-line was getting pushed around all first half. Don’t tell me they are a Top 5 defense if they can’t stop the run. They blitzed a lot for pre-season game #2 and were getting burned more times than not. If you can’t stop the run and you can’t get home on your blitzes, then you are cooked.”
Mac Jones missed two big plays downfield when he overthrew DaVante Parker. I thought that Parker didn’t extend himself to make the catch. He alligator armed the pass. It was questionable if Henry or Jones misread the coverage. It appeared that Henry stayed down the seam and was open and Jones threw it more toward the sideline. Jones ended up 6 of 9 for 52 yards. They scored on the short field after the botched snap turnover by Green Bay.
Sidy Sow gave up a sack but he is gaining valuable experience and played well otherwise. His block was key on the Stephenson TD run. On the other hand, what was Mac Jones doing in the game when the Patriots were playing Andrew Steuber at Left Tackle? The second-year tackle (he is essentially a rookie) missed most of last season with an injury the team knew about when they drafted him. Steuber looked like a turnstile as the DE swam right around him for the strip sack. Steuber is a Right Tackle at best.
Bailey Zappe had an uneven performance going 10-22. His highlights were the 42-yard TD to Kayshon Boutte during a two-minute drill at the end of the 1st half. This tidbit is from ESPN’s Mike Reiss. Boutte made an adjustment prior to the snap, stepping back off the line of scrimmage. This would have made the receiver to his inside an ineligible receiver because Boutte would have been covering him.
Zappe zipped the ball to Boutte on a skinny post which beat the cornerback playing press man and then he split the safety with no one in front of him he strolled into the endzone. Zappe led another drive that consumed 8:49 of the 3rd quarter to put the Patriots in the lead. It was an 88-yard drive that finished on a 4th and 2 at the 6-yard line. Zappe rolled right and directed the WR to go to the back of the endzone. Two players went with him, and Zappe strolled into the endzone untouched. That was a very impressive 18-play drive. This was a very impressive drive against backups. The Patriots were able to run a little with JJ Taylor.
Kendrick Bourne and Demario Douglas didn’t play much but made an impact when they were in there. Bourne had a nice leaping catch from Jones for 17 yards and Douglas ran a skinny post for a 15-yard gain. He was also impressive on a WR screen where he should have been tackled for a loss but squirmed his way for a modest two-yard game.
Malike Cunningham had a tough day as a receiver with no catches on 5 targets. However, his block sprung Rhamondre Stephenson for a big 23-yard gain. Cunningham was also used as a Kickoff returner, which he ran back 23 yards, taking the ball from 2 yards deep in the End Zone.
Tyquan Thornton who hurt his shoulder in the joint practices didn’t play. Jon Jones and Marte Mapu didn’t play. Keion White and Pierre Strong dressed but didn’t play. Conor McDermott got dinged during practice and was held out requiring the switch by Andrew Steuber. Trey Flowers, Michael Owenu, and Cody Davis are still on PUP. Calvin Anderson is still on the Non-Football Illness list. Cole Strange dressed for practices but didn’t participate or play in the game. It was good to see Carl Davis play in the game after being hurt in the game last week against Houston.
Tre Nixon sustained what appeared to be a shoulder injury.
Too Many Penalties
This crew was flag happy and it made for a very long 1st t half. Sam Roberts and Christian Gonzalez were called for phantom fouls. Roberts for a 15-yard Hand to the face and Gonzalez for a Pass Interference. The play was a good one by Gonzalez and should have resulted in an interception.
To start the first offensive series LT Trent Brown was called for a False Start trying to get a jump start in his drop back to pass block. The penalty was obvious and hard to dismiss.
Green Bay successfully challenged a deep pass in which Isaiah Bolden had good coverage.
Posted Under: Patriots News