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Week 16 Patriots-Jets snap counts: WR Julian Edelman has a relaxing a day off

The Patriots are really monitoring the snaps of their star receiver.

Here are the snap counts from the New England Patriots 41-3 victory over the New York Jets.

Patriots rested the left side of their offensive line

RT Marcus Cannon, RG Shaq Mason, and C David Andrews played all 75 offensive snaps. LG Joe Thuney and LT Nate Solder rested for three snaps, each, and played just 72 (96%) of the snaps. OT Cameron Fleming (10, 13%) played as an extra blocker and in place of Solder, while rookie OG Ted Karras (3 snaps, 4%) took the field, too.

QB Tom Brady (61, 85%) actually played less than one skill player, while QB Jimmy Garoppolo (15, 20%) played the entire fourth quarter. I’m not sure why the quarterback snaps total 76, while the linemen only total 75.

FB James Develin played more than the running backs

Develin (41, 55%) played over 50% of the snaps for the second straight week and has increased his role with the loss of TE Rob Gronkowski. RB LeGarrette Blount (30, 40%) led the rotation at running back, with RB Dion Lewis (27, 36%) close behind, and RB James White (19, 25%) seeing a smaller role.

WR Julian Edelman played a surprisingly low number of snaps

While WR Chris Hogan (64, 85%) outsnapped Brady, Edelman (36, 48%) played the 5th most snaps for a Patriots skill player. It’s clear the Patriots understand Edelman’s importance to the offense and are not playing him a snap more than he needs to play.

WR Malcolm Mitchell (58, 77%) and TE Martellus Bennett (50, 67%) were the other key starters, along with Hogan and Develin. TE Matt Lengel (24, 32%) played heavy snaps, while WR Michael Floyd (18, 24%) saw some time at receiver late in the game.

DT Malcom Brown was in the doghouse

Brown (16, 29%) didn’t play until the fourth quarter after being late to a team meeting, and rookie DT Vincent Valentine (41, 73%) led the defensive tackles with snaps. Brown’s starting job shouldn’t be jeopardy, though. DT Alan Branch (35, 62%) played his normal snap count.

Patriots are just rotating their pass rushers equally

If we want to talk about a good problem, it’s that the Patriots are now rotating their pass rushers on a per-drive basis. ED Trey Flowers (32, 57%), ED Chris Long (31, 55%), ED Jabaal Sheard (30, 54%), and ED Rob Ninkovich (27, 48%) played negligibly different snap rates over the course of the game. This depth is keeping the players fresh later into the game.

There was a minor rotation at linebacker, with LB Kyle Van Noy (45, 80%) and LB Shea McClellin (35, 62%) leading the way, and LB Elandon Roberts (28, 50%) playing primarily on rushing downs.

The starting secondary received some much deserved rest

FS Devin McCourty (49, 88%), SS Patrick Chung (49, 88%), CB Malcolm Butler (49, 88%), and CB Eric Rowe (49, 88%) earned time off, with Rowe finally healthy enough to assume his spot in the starting lineup over CB Logan Ryan (44, 79%). S Duron Harmon (32, 57%) played in his normal role. Rookie cornerbacks Jonathan Jones (11, 20%) and Cyrus Jones (7, 12%) took the field, with S Jordan Richards (7, 12%) and S Nate Ebner (2, 4%) getting some time as well.

The following played 15+ snaps on special teams:

Nate Ebner (21), Geneo Grissom (20), Brandon Bolden (19), Jonathan Jones (19), Jordan Richards (18), Brandon King (18), Barkevious Mingo (17), Stephen Gostkowski (16)