FOXBORO — As the New England Patriots attempt to digest their 23-21 loss to the New York Giants, they continue to take stock into their performance on both sides of the ball.
Heading into a week in which the Pats will participate in joint practices with the Carolina Panthers (culminating with their preseason matchup at Gillette Stadium on Fri. Aug. 19), there are plenty of areas in which they will seek improvement. While game-film analysis will be the main focus, a look at playing time may assist the Pats in helping devise effective strategies moving forward.
Here is a look at the Patriots offensive snap counts, along with some possible insight on New England’s future game-planning.
On offense, the Pats overall snap count was 62 versus the Giants.
With most of their starters taking the night off, New England provided several rookies with the chance to showcase their talents. Left guard Cole Strange and wide receiver Tyquan Thornton are two offensive rookies that are expected to earn notable playing time this season. Strange played 14 snaps; Thornton 22.
With starter Mac Jones on the sidelines and veteran Brian Hoyer taking only 14 snaps during the first two series, rookie Bailey Zappe logged 48 snaps at quarterback. Despite some struggles in the first half, the Western Kentucky product looked more comfortable in the second, connecting with receivers Kristian Wilkerson and Tre Nixon on a few impressive deep completions. In total, Zappe finished the night 19 of 32 for 205 yards with one touchdown and an interception.
In addition to starters Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith, tight ends Devin Asiasi and Dalton Keene were also out of action. Though the former pair were not expected to play, the latter duo were sidelined due to injuries. As such, former Detroit Lion Matt Sokol took 51 snaps, making one catch for four yards.
Roster hopefuls Arlington Hambright and Kody Russey benefited from a shortage of offensive linemen. The undrafted rookie saw the majority of the team's snaps at center (playing in place of starter David Andrews) with 48. Hambright aligned at both right guard and left tackle when teammates Yodny Cajuste and Justin Herron went down with injuries. Of the two, Hanbright was the bigger standout. He contributed a key block on inside zone to open a cutback lane for rookie running back Pierre Strong. In conjunction with the consistency he has shown in camp, Hambright’s performance will help his case to earn a roster spot.