NEPD is stepping in for B. Delabarrera this week for your Pre-Game meal.
An upset victory of the high-powered Rams powered the Patriots to a dynasty that culminated with three Lombardi trophies being housed at Gillette Stadium.
While a third week preseason game against the lowly Rams doesn’t have as much cache as a Superbowl, it will be a major milestone in the new-look Patriots bid to reclaim their seat among the elite of the NFL.
After promising victories against the Saints and Falcons, the Patriots will be looking for depth in some key areas tomorrow against Sam Bradford and the Rams.
Injuries have depleted the ranks on the offensive and defensive lines, providing an opportunity for some young players to step up and earn some playing time.
Dan Connolly has been a revelation at left guard, with Nick Kaczur and Logan Mankins not walking through the door anytime soon.
A backup for Connolly and veteran Stephen Neal however, has been harder to come by. Ted Larsen has been plagued by penalties and missed assignments, while Rich Ohrnberger has been inconsistent at best.
Quinn Ojinnaka, recently acquired in a trade from Atlanta, will also compete for playing time at the guard positions.
Other than guard, the most intriguing position battles are shaping up on the defensive side of the ball. One position each at OLB and ILB are up for grabs, as well as the starting position opposite Leigh Bodden at cornerback.
With Gary Guyton still nursing an injury, Brandon Spikes has installed himself as the odds on favorite to start opposite Jerod Mayo, with Tyrone McKenzie and Dane Fletcher lagging well behind.
The OLB job is wide open, with Derrick Burgess, Jermaine Cunningham, Rob Ninkovich, and Marques Murrell all having worked with the first team this preseason. Tully Banta-Cain, if healthy, is a lock to start. Who his companion will be, might be the guy that gets Sam Bradford to the ground.
Darius Butler and Devin McCourty have both been playing well at corner this preseason, while McCourty has also found success on special teams.
Tags: Pre-Game Meal