The New England Patriots will play the Philadelphia Eagles tonight in their second game of the preseason. Last season in regular play the two teams met and New England won 38-20. Since 2001, the Pats ate 4-0 versus the Eagles. Both teams are 1-0 in the preseason. The Eagles are coming off a 24-23 victory versus the Steelers while the Patriots beat New Orleans last week 7-6.
Will Quarterbacks Play?
How much will we see the starting quarterbacks in this game? Starters tend to play little in the first few preseason games. Brady and Vick both played sparingly. I expect to see more of Ryan Mallett and Brian Hoyer the two backups for the Pats. One will have to earn the second sport on the roster.
The spot looks to be Hoyer’s who is in his forth season with the Pats and is an overall solid backup. Mallet, in year two, is being pushed in practice but has not had the chops at this point. The Pats might be looking to deal Hoyer this season but only if Mallet shows a great deal of progress. This can be the game where that decision is made.
The Addition of Jeff Demps
Jeff Demps, the former Gator track star and football running, is a huge addition to the Pats’ offense. Demps, who earned Silver at this year’s Olympics, has great speed and his addition to the New England offense makes what might be one of the best in the AFC even more potent.
Demps will not only be a strong RB and return man but he can be an amazing safety valve for short passes. When you consider New England’s depth at tight end and the fine pass catchers, the signing of Demps is simply the icing on the cake. You’ll see him tonight and I think he’ll make some plays.
The real man in the spotlight tonight is coach Bill Belichick. He has a lot of decisions to make as he works towards cutting the roster and finding the right mix for this season. Along with that he’ll be looking at how he can utilize what should be a mammoth. Additionally, the coach knows that he needs to have a defense that stays healthy and shows up for every game. The preseason is about getting those aspects of the team in order.
I think we’ll see more offense in this game than we did in the first contest. How much more? Look for the Pats to put at least 21 points on the board. Will they keep the Eagles in check? I believe they will, holding them to 10. We’ll see tomorrow if I’m right!