Following the events of Saturday night’s game, the Patriots decided to cancel their joint practices against the Titans this week, opting to remain in Foxboro ahead of Friday’s preseason finale in Tennessee.
After remaining in Green Bay overnight following Isaiah Bolden’s injury, the club is reportedly flying back today.
The sessions with the Titans were initially scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday, and the club said in a statement that both the circumstance and the additional time in Green Bay contributed to the decision.
“After undergoing a series of evaluations and being held for overnight observations, Patriots cornerback Isaiah Bolden has been released from the Aurora Bay Medical Center in Green Bay, Wisconsin, where he was transported to after sustaining an on-field injury in the fourth quarter of Saturday night’s preseason game between the New England Patriots and the Green Bay Packers,” the team said. “Isaiah will travel with the team today.”
“We thank the medical staff at Aurora Bay Medical Center for their overnight evaluations, as well as the Patriots and Packers medical staffs for their immediate on-field response and care in transporting Isaiah to a nearby hospital.”
“Due to the circumstances surrounding the abrupt and unexpected ending to last night’s game, the Patriots will return to Foxborough today. The joint practices that were scheduled with the Tennessee Titans on Tuesday and Wednesday are cancelled. The team will train in Foxborough this week and fly to Nashville on Thursday for Friday night’s game.”
They’ll instead likely treat this next stretch similar to how they would a normal regular season game, which will provide an additional benefit for the players as they start getting into a weekly routine following the upcoming roster cutdowns.
Positive News On Bolden
After a scary scene where Bolden was carted off the field on Saturday night, leading to the remainder of the game between Green Bay and New England being called off with 10:24 still left to play, the news was at least positive.
The team issued a statement after the game that Bolden “had feeling in his extremities but has been taken to a local hospital for further tests and observation.” That was good news considering how scary things initially appeared at the end of Saturday night’s game.
The play happened with just 10:38 left to go in the contest, with Packers quarterback Sean Clifford dropping back to pass on a 3rd-and-7 from the New England 25 yard line.
Clifford fired a throw to receiver Malik Heath, who was battling against Bolden at the line before cutting his route in and making the reception. However, linebacker Calvin Munson came in low to put a hit on Heath and instead collided with Bolden, striking him in the head with his shoulder as he closed in.
Bolden was spun around by the impact and instantly dropped to the ground motionless, with trainers sprinting out there to try and help him.
He was down on the ground for a significant amount of time, with players gathering around and taking a knee as medical staff came onto the field.
He was later taken off the field on a stretcher, with Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and Packers head coach Matt LaFluer each seemingly having a discussion ahead of the announcement by the officials where the remainder of the game was being called off shortly after.
“We’re all saying a prayer for Isaiah,” said Belichick after the game. “We just released a statement on that already. All the information … that’s the updated information that we have. I appreciate the way the league handled it, I think that was the right thing to do.”
Reports on Sunday have said the defensive back has been released from the hospital and will fly home with his teammates, which is definitely good news.
Bolden actually played well Saturday night, notching three tackles while also looking pretty good in pass coverage. He’s had a fairly strong camp, and had grown quite a bit in New England’s secondary.
Hopefully, he’ll make a full recovery and it’s safe to say everyone is relieved that he’s O.K. given how things initially looked when it happened.
Nixon Also Banged Up
Wide receiver Tre Nixon was also injured in this one, which finishes off another disappointing preseason for the former USF standout.
The injury happened with just over a minute left to play in the half. On the play, second-string quarterback Bailey Zappe threw into triple coverage on a pass to Nixon, which ended in disastrous fashion.
As the ball arrived, the Packers’ secondary collapsed on Nixon as safety Anthony Johnson Jr. went up for the football to try and knock the pass away from Nixon.
Instead, not only did he get his hand on the football, but Johnson also ended up landing on top of Nixon, with the receiver’s right shoulder driven into the turf as he hit the ground with Johnson’s weight bearing down on him.
Nixon stayed down after the play as Johnson got up and celebrated the incompletion. When it became clear Nixon was hurt significantly, trainers then rushed out and tended to him.
Nixon remained down for a while, to the point where Bill Belichick even walked over to check on him as the young wideout remained on the turf. He eventually walked off under his own power, favoring his right arm, but it was an ugly scene for a player who has worked so hard to establish a role.
It’s been a tough preseason for Nixon, who continues to get close but can’t quite seem to take the next step. He’s been prone to drops in key moments of preseason, including one last week where he dropped a would-be touchdown from Malik Cunningham, which could have been a big moment for him as he continues fighting for a roster spot.
Unfortunately, it’s been moments like those where he’s come close but hasn’t been quite able to convert, and his latest injury may have again ended those hopes ahead of the 2023 season.
Munson was obviously shaken after his collision with Bolden. (PHOTO: Dan Powers/USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin)
Odds and Ends
Munson was spotted by himself in a photo (above) looking fairly distraught after Bolden went down, having been the one who collided with him. Hopefully, he’s feeling a little better knowing that his teammate at least escaped serious injury … Malik Cunningham didn’t see time at quarterback Saturday night and it’s tough to say how many snaps he might have gotten under center if he had. Bailey Zappe played into the third quarter and ate up a lot of time after closing it out with a 17-play, 88-yard touchdown drive, which lasted nearly 9-minutes. That would have likely been Zappe’s final series, which would have seen either Trace McSorely or Cunningham take the field on the next drive. Obviously, that opportunity never came as the game was called after Bolden’s injury on the ensuing series by the Packers. … Cunningham did see action both on kick returns and at receiver, participating in 53% of Saturday night’s snaps (he was out there for 31 plays) but he still appears to be a work in progress in the passing game as the club likely continues trying to figure out a role for him on the roster.
Posted Under: Patriots News
Tags: Bailey Zappe Isaiah Bolden Malik Cunningham Tre Nixon