FOXBORO — Following their 37-27 loss to the Baltimore Ravens in Week 3 at Gillette Stadium, the New England Patriots continue to take stock into their performance on both sides of the ball.
Having turned in a performance which featured both promising and disappointing moments, there are plenty of areas in which the Pats will seek improvement. While game-film analysis will be the main focus, a look at playing time may assist the team in helping devise effective strategies moving forward.
Here is a look at the Patriots snap counts, along with some possible insight on New England’s future game-planning.
On offense, the Pats overall snap count was 66 against the Ravens.
Despite suffering a significant ankle injury on his final pass attempt of the day, quarterback Mac Jones once again took 100 percent of the Patriots offensive snaps. In addition to Jones, New England’s entire starting offensive line went the distance. Despite some miscues in pass protection, the Patriots o-line continues to improve its run blocking. The line’s gap schemes and pulling blocks helped to spring some impressive runs. However, right tackle Isaiah Wynn continues to struggle with his discipline. Wynn was flagged for a pair of costly penalties which disrupted the rhythm of two promising offensive drives.
Running back Rhamondre Stevenson saw the field for 41 snaps, carrying the ball 12 times for 73 yards and one touchdown. Though he typically takes on the role of feature back, Damien Harris logged 25 total offensive snaps. However, he did make the most of them, gaining 41 yards on 11 attempts with one touchdown. Though he was active and available, rookie Pierre Strong, Jr. did not see the field on Sunday.
With Jakobi Meyers having missed Week 3 with a knee injury, fellow wideouts DeVante Parker (64), Lil’Jordan Humphrey (54) and Nelson Agholor (50) each saw the field for greater than 75 percent of New England’s offensive plays. Parker finished with five receptions for 156 yards, earning his 12th career 100-yard game, and his first as a member of the Patriots. All in all, the Pats wideout took full advantage of Baltimore’s cornerbacks having played him in single coverage on the outside. The big surprise among the receivers group was Bourne, who continues to see his time on the field kept to a minimum. Bourne took only 18 snaps against Baltimore, catching four passes for a total of 58 yards.
While Hunter Henry (46) and Jonnu Smith (32) continue to see the field in blocking schemes, New England’s tight-endage duo remains a non-factor in the Patriots offense. Smith caught all four of his targets for 25 yards, while Henry was targeted only once, which he caught for an eight-yard gain.
On defense, the Pats overall snap count was 60 against the Ravens.
A pair of Patriots safeties led the way for the defense, as Devin McCourty and Adrian Phillips were present for all 60 of the team’s snaps on the preventive side of the ball. Despite the absence of Kyle Dugger, New England still employed their typical big-nickel secondary, utilizing Jabrill Peppers for his season-high 38 snaps. Safety Joshuah Bledsoe took only five snaps in his NFL debut, struggling in man coverage against Baltimore tight end Mark Andrews. The reigning Ravens’ All-Pro was able to exploit the mismatch in man coverage as Bledsoe (who was making his NFL debut) attempted to keep pace.
Along the Pats defensive front, Deatrich Wise, Jr. has become one of the Patriots most fearsome defenders on the edge. The former Arkansas Razorback, who saw the field for 44 defensive snaps, compiled six total tackles (four of which were for loss) and was credited with three sacks on Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson. Interior defensive tackle Lawrence Guy was limited to 18 snaps, having lef the game in the third quarter with shoulder injury.
Cornerback Jonathan Jones is emerging as a true presence on the perimeter. The Auburn product saw the field for 56 defensive snaps, compiling 4 total tackles, one pass break-up, one forced fumble and an interception. For his efforts, he has earned the top spot on Pro Football Focus’ cornerback rankings, earning both the highest overall grade (85.6) and the highest coverage grade (90.4). Fellow starter Jalen Mills, who saw limited action due to a lingering hamstring injury, played on 34 defensive snaps.
Ja’Whaun Bentley led all linebackers by taking 56 defensive snaps, while ex-Raven Matthew Judon played on 48. Judon was the only member of the linebackers group to earn a sack on Jackson, while also contributing one quarterback hit and one tackle. In the absence of Raekwon McMillan (who sat out Sunday’s game with a thumb injury), Mack Wilson saw action on 41 defensive snaps.
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