Friday, August 08, 2008
No Tom Brady, no Randy Moss, no Wes Welker, no Mike Vrabel, no Rodney Harrison, no James Sanders, no Jarvis Green, no Ellis Hobbs, no Sammy Morris and no Matt Light. Last night's 16-15 loss to Baltimore was an evening for rookies and aging veterans to demonstrate that they belong on this team.
Newly acquired RB LaMont Jordan made a good case for himself, rushing 19 times for 76 yards (4.0 YPC), and the lone New England touchdown.
Rookie LB Shawn Crable also had a good night. He was in on 4 tackles, had half a sack, and made an interception. Jerod Mayo also impressed with a couple of nice tackles, one of which knocked the RB's helmet off.
By the way, I love Adalius Thomas as a full-time OLB. I hope he and Vrabel stay out there on the sides, because they're both playmakers from those spots.
The competition for the #2 QB spot remains a close one as none of the three candidates did much to impress. Cassel, Gutierrez, and Kevin O'Connell each threw a pick. O'Connell probably had the best night, but that's due to his feet. He ran twice for 22 yards. He was only 6 of 13 passing, for a mere 57 yards.
Chad Jackson and Jabbar Gaffney started at WR last night. Jackson was invisible. He had one catch for no gain. Granted, he was playing with backup QBs, but they were finding receivers. Raymond Ventrone led the Pats with 2 catches for 35 yards. He's listed as a safety.
Despite none of the big stars playing, 5 turnovers, and horrible kickoff/punt coverage; the Patriots nearly won.
Just to show how poorly the Ravens are these days, and how mighty the Patriots are; here's what Baltimore coach John Harbaugh said after a 16-15 PRESEASON win:
"It counts. There's the excitement of the players coming up here and getting a victory in this stadium against this team. It was a real thrill to be here."
Last year, the Ravens treated their game with the Pats as if it were the Super Bowl. This year, a preseason game will have to due for them.
The next preseason game is a week from Sunday in Tampa against the Buccaneers.
AP Photo/Christopher James Savoia
AP Photo/Stephan Savoia