Wow, what a barnburner! The New England Patriots defeated Washington 26-17 in the most dramatic, come-from-behind victory in all of the team’s 2018 football season.
Of the healthy Patriots players, Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski, Rex Burkhead, and Devin McCourty didn’t play.
The first team defense looked terrible against Washington, with back-up quarterback Colt McCoy picking apart the Patriots’ starting secondary of Stephon Gilmore, Eric Rowe, Patrick Chung, and Duron Harmon. It’s a good thing this game doesn’t actually count for the standings.
Washington quarterbacks combined to go 20/27 (70.0%) for 233 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 0 interceptions for a passer rating of 124.5, while their running backs gained 119 yards on 25 carries (4.8 yards per carry).
The Patriots offense faltered in comparison, with Brian Hoyer and Danny Etling combining to go 18/28 (60.0%) for 165 yards and no touchdowns. Jeremy Hill, Ralph Webb, and Mike Gillislee combined for 140 yards and 3 touchdowns on 39 carries, with Hill having the most notable outing. It’s likely that he’ll jump Gillislee on the depth chart and should be the favorite to be the final running back on the roster.
We’ll break down more film over the course of the week, but it wasn’t a great day for the Patriots top players. Chris Hogan and Phillip Dorsett had disappointing outings as Patriots receivers, which kind of set the tone for the top unit offense.
Of the notable roster battles, Trent Brown started at left tackle and Dwayne Allen was the top non-Gronkowski tight end. Sophomores Deatrich Wise and Derek Rivers got the start on defense with Lawrence Guy and Malcom Brown in the middle.
Washington First Drive (WAS1): 7 plays, 29 yards, punt
Patriots First Drive (NE1): 3 plays, 7 yards, punt
WAS2: 6 plays, 50 yards, 25-yard touchdown pass by Colt McCoy to Byron Marshall; 0-7
NE2: 3 plays, -3 yards, punt
WAS3: 10 plays, 39 yards, field goal; 0-10
NE3: 5 plays, 16 yards, punt
WAS4: 8 plays, 43 yards, punt
NE4: 5 plays, 20 yards, punt
WAS5: 3 plays, 59 yards, 3-yard touchdown pass by Colt McCoy to Maurice Harris; 0-17
NE5: 3 plays, 4 yards, punt
WAS6: 6 plays, 30 yards, punt
NE6: 4 plays, 56 yards, field goal; 3-17
WAS7: kneeldown to halftime
Notable Patriots Halftime Stats:
QB Brian Hoyer: 6/12 (50%) for 65 yards
RB Jeremy Hill: 4 carries, 30 yards; 1 catch, 2 yards
RB Mike Gillislee: 5 carries, 9 yards
WR Devin Lucien: 2 catches, 47 yards
RB James White + WR Chris Hogan + WR Phillip Dorsett: 5 targets, 0 catches
LB Ja’Whaun Bentley: 6 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 1 quarterback hit
NE7: 19 plays, 84 yards, 1-yard touchdown run by Jeremy Hill; 10-17
WAS8: 3 plays, 7 yards, punt
NE8: 16 plays, 90 yards, 8-yard touchdown run by Ralph Webb; 2-point conversion from Hoyer to Webb successful; 18-17
WAS9: 4 plays, 0 yards, punt
NE9: 7 plays, 24 yards, Danny Etling loses the fumble
WAS10: 3 plays, -5 yards, Kevin Hogan loses the fumble and Geneo Grissom returns the ball to the 1-yard line
NE10: 2 plays, 1 yard, 1-yard touchdown run by Ralph Webb; 2-point conversion by Webb successful; 26-17
WAS11: 5 plays, 37 yards, missed field goal
NE11: 3 plays, 4 yards, punt
WAS12: End of Game
Notable Patriots Final Stats
QB Brian Hoyer: 17/25, 147 yards
RB Jeremy Hill: 11 carries, 51 yards (4.6 YPC), 1 touchdown; 2 catches, 14 yards
RB Ralph Webb: 14 carries, 46 yards (3.3 YPC), 2 touchdowns
RB Mike Gillislee: 14 carries, 43 yards (3.1 YPC)
WR Devin Lucien: 4 catches, 71 yards
Are you ready for football to be back?! It’s hard to believe that the 2018 season is already upon us as the New England Patriots host Washington for the start of the preseason.
Date: Thursday, August 9th, 2018
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. ET
Location: Gillette Stadium, Foxboro, Massachusetts