On To Pittsburgh: Pats close out preseason with 12-9 loss to Giants
The Patriots wrapped up the preseason Thursday night at Gillette with a 12-9 loss to the New York Giants, and now (thank God) we're on to Pittsburgh and the 2015 regular season.
With Bill Belichick resting the majority of his starters, the 2's and 3's played the entire contest, and boy did it show. The two teams played each other even through four quarters of play, as neither team was able to find the endzone on the night. The Pats gained just 289 total yards of offense, while the Giants racked up a tad more at 300.
Playing all 60-minutes and likely playing his final snaps as a Patriot, quarterback Ryan Lindley went 22 for 45 for 253 yards and a pick, good for a 53.0 QB rating. New England struggled to string together consistent drives, and they had a very hard time establishing the running game. They gained just 61 total yards on the ground, with James White leading the attack with 36 yards on 10 rushes.
New England did have an opportunity to win the contest with time winding down in the fourth, but Lindley was strip-sacked on 2nd-and-goal at the 10 yard line, with the Giants recovering the fumble and kneeing out the rest of the clock.
If there's any positives to pull from the contest, Pats kicker Stephen Gostkowski looks to be in mid-season form after he booted all three of his field goals, with the longest proving to be a 50-yard blast in the fourth quarter. Also, Aaron Dobson was able to haul in four catches on six targets for 56 yards as New England's leading receiver.
Rookie defensive lineman Trey Flowers also made a handful of plays on the night, with him finishing with five total tackles, a tackle for loss, one pass defended and two QB hits. You can throw cornerback Logan Ryan on that list, too (10 tackles, one sack, one PBU, one QB hit).
Now, with the preseason behind them, the attention turns to crafting the 53-man roster and preparing for the Pittsburgh Steelers next Thursday night. Also, the concern for those that are banged up becomes magnified, with the likes of Julian Edelman, Brandon LaFell and Bryan Stork being chief among them.
Nothing seems to be too serious with either of those players, but there's only six days to go until things kick off for real. We hope all three are on the field come September 10.