One thing that I like to do after each Patriots game is provide a "stock report" on the performance of a few individual players. The first preseason game was mostly positive, but there were a few players that didn't look too great.
Tom Brady: While he couldn't get the ball moving his first drive, he led the team all the way for a touchdown his second, bringing some good energy to the game in the process, while also looking quite sharp.
Randy Moss: Who said Randy Moss wasn't a good route runner? Moss made a couple of first down catches on comebacks to the sideline.
Brandon Tate: Was only targeted once, but made a beautiful 20-yard sideline catch, putting one foot down while dragging the other, keeping control of the ball in the process.
Patrick Chung: 2nd year safety was constantly around the ball, coming up with a couple of solid tackles.
Terrence Wheatley/Jonathan Wilhite: 3rd year cornerbacks made a couple of nice plays. Wilhite recovered nicely on a deep ball and made a big hit to force and incomplete on another play. Wheatley was solid in run support, and had a nice pass break-up near the goal line.
Brandon Deaderick: Rookie 7th round pick played a lot of snaps at defensive end, showcasing an ability to hold his ground against double teams, while also providing value as a pass rusher.
Marques Murrell: Wasn't a big name before training camp, but free agent acquisition who was primarily a special teams player with the Jets got the start, and provided some nice pass rush, finishing with two tackles a sack, and two quarterback hurries.
Gerard Warren: Former 3rd overall pick started at defensive end in place of Ty Warren, and provided some nice pass rush in addition to eating up blocks.
Sergio Brown: The rookie free agent out of Notre Dame was flying all over the field, and made a couple of big hits, including the one that caused an interception and sealed the game.
Brandon Spikes: Started at inside linebacker next to Jerod Mayo and was constantly around the ball and showing great instincts, combining for a total of eight tackles.
Zoltan Mesko: Rookie punter was solid in pinning opponents, finishing with a gross average of 43.6 yards on his punts. Also handled a bad snap on a field goal.
Dan Connolly: Did a solid job with the first unit at left guard. Also paved the way as a lead blocker for a BenJarvus Green-Ellis touchdown run.
Laurence Maroney: Didn't start but looked really solid. Had two touchdown runs and looked decisive in hit cuts.
Thomas Clayton/Chris Taylor: Both backs are long shots to make the roster, but both played well. Chris Taylor looked powerful and compact.
Brian Hoyer: 2nd year quarterback looked poised in his playing time, leading the Patriots to two touchdown drives. He never was rattled under pressure.
Julian Edelman: The unquestionable MVP of this game. He is so quick and shifty, over 75% of his yards came after the catch. Also, he was thrown at six times, and caught six passes.
Whose stock is down? Well, you're going to have to make the jump to find out!
Thomas Welch: Welch and the third team offensive line looked dreadful. Welch, particularly, looked slow.
Darius Butler: Had a bad illegal contact penalty in coverage on a Saints fourth down attempt, and couldn't stop Reggie Bush at the goal line a few plays later.
Tyrone McKenzie: McKenzie played alright, but he was bumped behind Dane Fletcher on the depth chart.
The 3rd String Offensive Line: I sort of already mentioned this unit, but they were really terrible. They made life very difficult for Zac Robinson, who was hit seemingly every time he dropped back to pass. These guys should have looked good, they were going up against the Saints' third unit as well.
Taylor Price: Price wasn't particularly bad, but he was very quiet, and couldn't come up with a catch the two times he was thrown at (although this probably was due to the fact that Zac Robinson had no time to throw more than anything).
Rob Gronkowski: Gronkowski had a solid first have as an in-line blocker. In the second half, his performance dropped sharply.