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MORSE: Pre-Season Game 3 Patriots vs Titans Review

Mark Morse
Mark Morse on Twitter
August 26, 2023 at 8:28 am ET

MORSE: Pre-Season Game 3 Patriots vs Titans Review(PHOTO: Andrew Nelles / The Tennessean / USA TODAY NETWORK)
Posted: Aug 26, 2023 08:28
🕑 Read Time: 3 minutes

The Patriots rested their starters in the final Pre-season loss to the Tennessee Titans.  The heat was brutal with a game time temp near 100o and the on-field temp was 110o.  I was surprised some of the backup players played so much and the Patriots had quite a few injuries, the most serious was a knee injury to O-lineman Reilly Reiff.

It was difficult to find any positives in the game, but a few players that were on the bubble played well and others didn’t.

Positives

DT Sam Roberts  It was a nice bounce back game for Roberts.  He was a force all night and played a tremendous number of snaps.  It appeared that he ran out of gas in the 4th quarter.  Was it enough to keep him on the 53-man roster?  I don’t think so, but it might have been enough for a team scouting the Patriots to pick him off the waiver wire.

Edge Ronnie Perkins This is the first time we have seen Perkins on the field and he looked pretty good.  The former 3rd round pick finished with 9 tackles on the night and was a force until he too ran out of gas.

Edge Anfernee Jennings  His contribution came in the 1st few series where he set the edge and forced the plays inside.

LB Calvin Munson  He led the team with 10 tackles and an Interception.  His impressive play in this game combined with his outstanding Special Teams work may have earned him a spot on the 53-man roster.

LB/S Marte Mapu  We finally got to see the player that everyone has been raving about.  He made a few plays and whiffed on another before getting nicked up and taking himself out of the game.  He came up on a swing pass and made a nice open field tackle.  He got beat deep covering a TE, but the pass was overthrown.

Patriots 2nd Team Defense vs Tennessee 1st Team Offense   I thought the second teamers played well against the Titans 1st team.  Three and out the 1st series.

P Bryce Baringer Averaged nearly 50 yards a punt.  He had one kick for 69 yards, while putting two others inside the 20.

Negatives

Offense was anemic – 8 First Downs,  8 completed passes for a total of 79 yards of offense.  They gave up 6 sacks of which three were strip sack fumbles by Zappe.

O-line Pathetic is the only way to describe the effort.  Reiff gets hurt and they put Bill Murray the former DT at Right Tackle.  They had Andrew Steuber starting at Left Tackle.

Athlete Malik Cunningham He certainly is not a Wide Receiver.  He runs sloppy routes and can’t catch.  He comes on as a sub situation QB and makes a nice run, but when a pass is needed the coaches took him out.  I feel that Cunningham may have played himself off the 53-man roster.

Receivers  Kayshon Boutte and Ty Montgomery didn’t play, Does this mean they have made the team?   Demario Douglas was hurt in the Green Bay game and wasn’t a full participant in practices this week.   That meant the targets for Zappe were Raleigh Webb, Malik Cunningham and Thyrick Pitts.  They couldn’t get open and Zappe was forced to hold onto the ball versus the Titans top defense.

QB Bailey Zappe  He didn’t play well, but how could he?  I was very surprised that Zappe was still in there in the second half.  I thought Bill O’Brien wanted to put him back out there against the 2nd team Titans defense.  They wanted him to redeem himself.

CB Jack Jones  He is potentially their starting cornerback!   He has the court case hanging over him.  Were the Patriots sending a message by playing him so much?  Jack Jones does have the potential to be suspended by the league as well.

About Mark Morse

Merrimack Valley native and lifelong fan of the New England Patriots. My earliest memories of the Patriots were attending as a child with my dad, the off-season practice at Phillips Academy. I was at the Patriots game at Harvard Stadium in 1970 where Bob “Harpo” Gladieux was called out of the stands by the stadium announcer over the PA to play in the game. Analyzing the draft since ESPN first started to televise it in 1980 and former writer for the Lowell Sun Newspaper.


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