Soon after the NFL released its preseason schedule, reports started to surface that the New England Patriots were in preliminary discussions about scheduling joint practice sessions. The team talked to its week one and two opponents – the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Houston Texans – to potentially join forces.
Practices with the Jaguars were confirmed last month and it seems as if the Patriots have found another sparing partner: Yesterday, the team officially confirmed that it will hold joint practices with the Texans as well. Leading up to the two teams’ preseason meeting on August 9, they will conduct joint sessions on Tuesday, August 15 and Wednesday, August 16.
While the ultimate preseason game will take place in Houston’s NRG Stadium – the site of New England’s recent Super Bowl victory –, the practices will be held at The Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. It is the second time the Patriots will visit the resort after having held joint practices with the New Orleans Saints there in 2015.
Once the Patriots-Texans preseason matchup was scheduled, the Patriots and Texans started working together on organizing collective practices – despite meeting during the regular season one month later. With Houston being coached by former New England offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien, the joint sessions were a logical move and do not come as a surprise.
Overall, the 2017 training camp will mark the sixth straight year that New England holds joint practices. Last season, the team held two, hosting both the New Orleans Saints and the Chicago Bears. With the Texans also officially joining the Jaguars in the fold now, the Patriots will also hold two joint sessions this year as well.