Pats Preseason: Offense Edition

Soxy

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Let us have this.
View: https://twitter.com/ZackCoxNESN/status/1423779929179705346

Hope you have Jonnu Smith on your fantasy team tonight. He's up to three first-half touchdowns from Mac Jones.
In all seriousness, Jonnu Smith was my #1 FA target and they signed him like 5 minutes into free agency, so I'm not trying to derail the Jonnu Smith hype train. He's going to be great and they clearly have a plan for him.

I think Henry is more the guy they'll move around a lot and Smith will be more like their new Gronk. He'll crush dudes in the run game, then make big plays in the open field in the passing game.
 

Kenny F'ing Powers

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Horrible development for him. Not many dudes can play basically zero game snaps for 2 seasons and be productive.
 

vadertime

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I thought you couldn't IR players until after final countdowns or they cleared waivers (supposedly a mecanism to keep teams from 'stashing' players)? I remember years ago that's how the Pats orginally got Tyler Gafney. Carolina waived him with the intention of him going on IR but the Pats claimed him.
 

Time to Mo Vaughn

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I thought you couldn't IR players until after final countdowns or they cleared waivers (supposedly a mecanism to keep teams from 'stashing' players)? I remember years ago that's how the Pats orginally got Tyler Gafney. Carolina waived him with the intention of him going on IR but the Pats claimed him.
I believe the difference is with players that are eligible to return or not.
 

Over Guapo Grande

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There is ... for the lack of better terms, pre-season IR and regular season IR. For the regular season, you can come back according to the IR rules (last year I believe it was 4 weeks). If put on in pre-season, you are done for the year- I think that you have to pass through waivers in this process, which is the Tyler Gaffney exception.
Now... given that Keene hadn't taken a training camp snap. he could have been PUP'd, so the Pats must not be too concerned about losing him, Z

That is my understanding, at least. I am not a front office executive, but I once did stay at a Holiday Inn when the Marriot was booked.
 

vadertime

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Keene can go on season ending IR prior to the start of the season. He does not need to pass through waivers. That rule changed in 2018 for unvested veterans (aka, fewer 4 years service time):
Ah. There it is. As soon as I saw the Keene news I immediately thought of Gaffney and why the Pats didn't have to waive him first. That explains it. So the Pats or any team for that matter could theoretically red-shirt an entire draft class if they were so inclined (assuming of course you got the players to go along with it).
 

lexrageorge

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Ah. There it is. As soon as I saw the Keene news I immediately thought of Gaffney and why the Pats didn't have to waive him first. That explains it. So the Pats or any team for that matter could theoretically red-shirt an entire draft class if they were so inclined (assuming of course you got the players to go along with it).
The NFL would probably want to see documented evidence of the injuries if they felt a team was using the IR list as a redshirt squad.
 
Apr 24, 2019
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It's too bad, but I wouldn't be shocked if this turns out okay for Keene. He had a decent shot of getting cut, especially if he just missed a bunch of time (but not enough for this outcome). Now he gets well, and sees how things shake out next year with the German FB and Matt LaCosse, maybe he has a shot next year to unseat one of them to make his way on to the 53. As it was going this year, even if he had come back healthy-ish, the odds weren't great for him.
 

lexrageorge

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I believe that Ted Johnson accused the Pats of doing that during his time there,
What he accused the Pats of was standard practice around the league.

Teams have always been allowed to place players on IR with injuries that were not necessarily season ending. Teams were sometimes stuck between a rock and a hard place when a rookie or roster bubble player got hurt in preseason and would miss, say, the first 6-8 games. By the time the player recovered, got back into shape, and then was able to contribute, a good chunk of the season would be over, and a valuable roster spot would be taken up during that time. So it was not at all uncommon for players on IR to be fully recovered from their season ending injury long before the end of the season. The league's asinine IR rules at the time encouraged it.

At least now, with the relaxed rules for being placed on IR during the season, teams have more flexibility, which benefits teams and the players and the fans.

I don't recall a single instance of Belichick placing a player on IR without there being an actual injury involved.
 

Captaincoop

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It's too bad, but I wouldn't be shocked if this turns out okay for Keene. He had a decent shot of getting cut, especially if he just missed a bunch of time (but not enough for this outcome). Now he gets well, and sees how things shake out next year with the German FB and Matt LaCosse, maybe he has a shot next year to unseat one of them to make his way on to the 53. As it was going this year, even if he had come back healthy-ish, the odds weren't great for him.
He had a decent shot to make this year's team if he had come to camp healthy and shown some improvement. As it stands now, I'd bet we never see him play a game for the Pats.
 

Soxy

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It's too bad, but I wouldn't be shocked if this turns out okay for Keene. He had a decent shot of getting cut, especially if he just missed a bunch of time (but not enough for this outcome). Now he gets well, and sees how things shake out next year with the German FB and Matt LaCosse, maybe he has a shot next year to unseat one of them to make his way on to the 53. As it was going this year, even if he had come back healthy-ish, the odds weren't great for him.
He had a decent shot to make this year's team if he had come to camp healthy and shown some improvement. As it stands now, I'd bet we never see him play a game for the Pats.
I'm more with Mugsy in that Keene always looked like a square peg on this 2021 roster. Always seemed like they reached for him in the third round and he didn't show anything as a rookie. With Smith and Henry being added to Asiasi (who at least flashed at times last season), he never appeared to be more than the #4 TE, at best. Is he a better option at FB than Jakob Johnson? Does this team even keep a FB? I had a hard time envisioning a spot for Keene.

He unfortunately appears to be heading down the same path as Yodny Cajuste. Can't make the club from the tub.
 

RorschachsMask

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Starting to get really excited about this, he’s been a monster in the red zone all camp.
N’Keal Harry had one of the best practices of his career. The receiver looked dominant during 3-on-3 and 1-on-1 drills. Harry was 4-0 in those drills. That included a highlight reel diving touchdown catch in 1-on-1s. Before that, he jumped over Myles Bryant for a reception, had an over the shoulder catch against Kyle Dugger and shook Jackson Sr. out of his shoes on a slant.
https://amp.providencejournal.com/amp/5532120001?__twitter_impression=true
 

SeoulSoxFan

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How fun would it be if Harry suddenly became a legit threat?
Did he change his agent?

This is real first full training camp, I believe. If he can provide a decent 3rd down & red zone option, I'd be ecstatic as heck.

I heard on a podcast that Harry stopped trying to "play big". Whatever it is, this is as encouraging as I've ever been since his first (terrrific body-twisting) catch in his first pre-season game.
 

nattysez

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It's easy to forget how young these guys are. It would be great if a couple of years of pro experience and the "your value is so low that we can't get anyone to trade for you" wake-up call was what he needed to turn into a player. Fingers crossed.
 

NortheasternPJ

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It's easy to forget how young these guys are. It would be great if a couple of years of pro experience and the "your value is so low that we can't get anyone to trade for you" wake-up call was what he needed to turn into a player. Fingers crossed.
I'm hoping that's exactly what happened. Sorry Harry, we went to market and we got offered nothing more than a 7th round pick, so you have no leverage as there's no value to the team.

That would be a real kick in the nuts going from a 1st rounder to finding out he's basically worthless. Outside of Mac Jones being amazing, winning the job in camp and never having to see Cam take a snap for the Pats again, Harry turning into a beast is right behind that in my wishlist.
 

lexrageorge

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I wonder if he gets put on the IR-return list, and they go with Smith, Asiasi, and Lacosse to start the year.
Also, there is no longer an IR-return list. In 2021, any player placed on IR after the final cutdown day is eligible to return after 3 weeks.
 

SMU_Sox

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Some thoughts following game 1.

I only watched live and have not seen the replay but:

Offense:

WR: Overall not the best night. I know I have seen a replay or two where Harry got late separation and he did break a tackle for a 4 yards first down but I still came away wanting more. Wilkerson was so close to hauling in that deep pass. If he can do that they might have something but right now he looks like potentially ok depth. Meyers is the guy who gets open the most reliably and he has great hands.

TE: That RAC by Jonnu was something they sorely missed last year. Asiasi didn't get much play time until later but he is coming back from missing some time from COVID. Not encouraging but it's one game. Jonnu can't be holding there - penalties in the red zone are a huge no-no. Chase Young is a tough matchup though and he looked like he might go off this year.

RB: All of them showed their unique style and flavor and how they would fit in the offense. Harris was a cutback king in college and last year you didn't see that as much. Tonight he had a good one. JJT looked good as a receiver and is a different kind of runner than Harris/Sony/Michel. I don't know what the exact problem Fears has with Stevenson but he whooped their backups and bottom of the roster players. This is a good group of runners and not even counting ST ace and overall solid backup in Bolden. Bill gave him a quality ST contract and we know how important ST is to this organization. It's a good problem to have.

QB: Mac looked really good. I want to see if he checked down too much but my read was more that the WRs weren't getting open. He made some nice plays leading guys away with his eyes or sliding around in the pocket. His anticipation, quick decision making, and general accuracy were on display tonight. I know his stat line wasn't great but I think he played better than it. Cam was fine too.

OL: Cajuste and the backup OT crew were bad. Tackle depth is good with 3 guys in Brown, Wynn, and Herron who can likely handle LT or RT and Onwenu can handle RT. But the guys behind them struggled. Ferentz looked good and that right side of the line had some nasty run blocks. Wynn, Brown, Onwenu, Andrews, Mason, Herron, and Karras are all good options or good backups/swing OTs. If they carry 9 I think Ferentz is their 8th best guy right now based on what we saw tonight and reports out of camp. Not sure who that 9th guy is.

Overall I am encouraged by a lot of what I saw but want to monitor the Henry situation and the WR room. It could very well be that Agholor, Bourne, and Meyers are good enough. The two guys who stood out the most to me in positive ways were 1) Mac Jones who reacted well to pressure and seemed to be able to handle the offense and make quick reads and decisions and 2) Rhamondre Stevenson. Stevenson showed off his quick feet, burst, vision, power, and adequate long speed. He made sharp cuts and quick changes of direction at... 235 pounds. I just hope he stays on the straight and narrow and corrects the behavior that bothered Ivan Fears because he has some tantalizing traits and ability.
 

Bernie Carbohydrate

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WR: Overall not the best night. I know I have seen a replay or two where Harry got late separation and he did break a tackle for a 4 yards first down but I still came away wanting more. Wilkerson was so close to hauling in that deep pass. If he can do that they might have something but right now he looks like potentially ok depth. Meyers is the guy who gets open the most reliably and he has great hands.
Would you say Harry was a dominant downfield threat who was virtually unstoppable at the point of attack?
 

tims4wins

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TE: That RAC by Jonnu was something they sorely missed last year. Asiasi didn't get much play time until later but he is coming back from missing some time from COVID. Not encouraging but it's one game. Jonnu can't be holding there - penalties in the red zone are a huge no-no. Chase Young is a tough matchup though and he looked like he might go off this year.
Major Sweetleaf vibes on that play from Jonnu. I saw this week he was taking some snaps in the backfield, that also brings back memories.
 
Apr 24, 2019
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Cam had one bad drive, only some of which was his fault, and one very, very good drive. He’s not great or anything, but the second drive he led was really good, a serious improvement on what we came to expect from him last season.
 

DJnVa

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Cam had one bad drive, only some of which was his fault, and one very, very good drive. He’s not great or anything, but the second drive he led was really good, a serious improvement on what we came to expect from him last season.
And that drive did not include any designed Cam runs, which will be in the offense.
 

RedOctober3829

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Some thoughts following game 1.

I only watched live and have not seen the replay but:

Offense:

WR: Overall not the best night. I know I have seen a replay or two where Harry got late separation and he did break a tackle for a 4 yards first down but I still came away wanting more. Wilkerson was so close to hauling in that deep pass. If he can do that they might have something but right now he looks like potentially ok depth. Meyers is the guy who gets open the most reliably and he has great hands.

TE: That RAC by Jonnu was something they sorely missed last year. Asiasi didn't get much play time until later but he is coming back from missing some time from COVID. Not encouraging but it's one game. Jonnu can't be holding there - penalties in the red zone are a huge no-no. Chase Young is a tough matchup though and he looked like he might go off this year.

RB: All of them showed their unique style and flavor and how they would fit in the offense. Harris was a cutback king in college and last year you didn't see that as much. Tonight he had a good one. JJT looked good as a receiver and is a different kind of runner than Harris/Sony/Michel. I don't know what the exact problem Fears has with Stevenson but he whooped their backups and bottom of the roster players. This is a good group of runners and not even counting ST ace and overall solid backup in Bolden. Bill gave him a quality ST contract and we know how important ST is to this organization. It's a good problem to have.

QB: Mac looked really good. I want to see if he checked down too much but my read was more that the WRs weren't getting open. He made some nice plays leading guys away with his eyes or sliding around in the pocket. His anticipation, quick decision making, and general accuracy were on display tonight. I know his stat line wasn't great but I think he played better than it. Cam was fine too.

OL: Cajuste and the backup OT crew were bad. Tackle depth is good with 3 guys in Brown, Wynn, and Herron who can likely handle LT or RT and Onwenu can handle RT. But the guys behind them struggled. Ferentz looked good and that right side of the line had some nasty run blocks. Wynn, Brown, Onwenu, Andrews, Mason, Herron, and Karras are all good options or good backups/swing OTs. If they carry 9 I think Ferentz is their 8th best guy right now based on what we saw tonight and reports out of camp. Not sure who that 9th guy is.

Overall I am encouraged by a lot of what I saw but want to monitor the Henry situation and the WR room. It could very well be that Agholor, Bourne, and Meyers are good enough. The two guys who stood out the most to me in positive ways were 1) Mac Jones who reacted well to pressure and seemed to be able to handle the offense and make quick reads and decisions and 2) Rhamondre Stevenson. Stevenson showed off his quick feet, burst, vision, power, and adequate long speed. He made sharp cuts and quick changes of direction at... 235 pounds. I just hope he stays on the straight and narrow and corrects the behavior that bothered Ivan Fears because he has some tantalizing traits and ability.
I came into this week thinking the Patriots would only keep 4 WR's and last night did nothing to dissuade me from that opinion. I just don't see Harry having enough value to have him on the roster if he plays no special teams. Wilkerson showed me enough promise offensively to warrant himself being on the roster.