BOSTON — The preseason is over. For the Patriots — and particularly the Patriots’ offense — it did not go very nicely.
Towards the Panthers, Mac Jones and the starters obtained three drives. The primary two went three-and-out, and the third went 81 yards for a landing.
Towards the Raiders, Jones and the offense obtained 4 drives. The primary one misplaced 9 yards and led to a punt. The second ended with an unsightly interception. The third one gained 9 yards and led to a punt. And the fourth one led to a subject objective, after an offensive move interference penalty negated a landing.
Taken collectively, the unit took the sector for seven drives, with 4 ending in punts, one ending in an interception, and two ending with scores for a complete of 10 factors. Jones posted a 60.0 passer score, averaging 6.3 yards per try whereas taking three sacks.
It wasn’t good.
However the Patriots’ teaching employees is not up in arms about it.
“Yeah, I do not suppose you actually know the place your crew is till you get to about midseason, you understand, mid-October,” head coach Invoice Belichick stated when requested about his consolation stage within the offense in the intervening time. “Play 5, six, seven video games, match up towards some totally different groups, see for actual what your strengths and weaknesses are, and your opponents’ as nicely. You already know, what it appears like on paper and what it’s in preseason, and what it’s within the common season, I do not suppose they’re all the identical.”
Belichick added: “Folks actually begin attacking you, you begin attacking different folks, you get a significantly better really feel for what your issues are, possibly what your strengths are, how good they really are. So, yeah, we’ll see.”
Previous to Belichick’s press convention, assistant coaches spoke to the media within the tunnel of Gillette Stadium. That group, in fact, included Matt Patricia, who’s teaching offense for the primary time since 2005 and is dealing with a wealth of duties because the offensive line coach along with being the offensive play caller (whereas additionally serving because the crew’s nebulously named senior soccer advisor).
With the tough implementation of some zone blocking schemes for the offensive line being a serious story line of coaching camp and the preseason, Patricia was clearly requested in regards to the challenge. Particularly, Patricia was requested if he’d think about scrapping the zone blocking schemes altogether.
Patricia stated that every little thing this summer season has been extra in regards to the course of than outcomes.
“I believe actually proper now for us, once we work totally different runs within the run recreation, we have now totally different methods that we work. So whether or not it is zone methods or we run our hole schemes or our double-team methods, we’re simply making an attempt to ensure these fundamentals are dealt with from that standpoint,” Patricia stated. “Generally the emphasis is not a lot on, you understand, what does the manufacturing seem like in the intervening time? It is how good are we with our pad stage, our hand placement, our foot placement? Generally, you understand, proper now we’re operating into appears that possibly aren’t nice, you understand, simply in order that we get the runs run in that specific second and guarantee that we’re getting sufficient reps that every little thing earlier than the reps actually sort of get restricted as we go ahead from there.”
Patricia additionally indicated that a number of the lesser efficient components of the summer season might have been a byproduct of the crew making an attempt to do as a lot as doable — an strategy that can clearly change because the crew works to particularly game-plan week-to-week for every opponent.
“Loads of occasions we’re in coaching camp, we’re sort of doing every little thing versus every little thing, if that is sensible. You already know, you are making an attempt to cowl quite a lot of totally different floor versus all appears — and positively, that is very tough to do,” Patricia stated. “Whereas I might say, you understand, as we push ahead right here within the subsequent couple of days and sort of gear and refocus on Miami, we’ll be capable of get very particular with a number of the issues that they do or that we have seen them do, and attempt to put together from that facet of it. However there’s nonetheless quite a lot of work to be achieved, you understand, from our standpoint right here too, simply to sort of end off coaching camp and get a few good days of follow.”
Belichick pointed to final season, when the Patriots began the yr 2-4 earlier than rattling off seven straight wins and in the end making the playoffs.
“I believe quite a lot of veteran gamers know it, and I’ve heard lots of people touch upon it, that September’s an extension of the preseason, constructing your crew, creating your crew, I believe there’s some fact to that,” Belichick stated. “However the video games begin counting, so it is essential to be aggressive early. However I believe we noticed a few of that final yr. We see it yearly, however definitely noticed it final yr.”
Clearly, the Patriots’ teaching employees has confidence in its plans for the season. Simply as clearly, the preseason means little or no. The 2017 Browns went 4-0 within the preseason earlier than going 0-16 within the common season, in spite of everything.
But as of now, it is formally soccer season. Even when Belichick is working to downplay the significance of September, there will not be many phrases that can work to quell issues if the offense appears the identical within the common season because it has all through the summer season.