New England Patriots: Hollister and Carr could battle for final roster spot

COLUMBUS, OH - OCTOBER 29: Austin Carr
COLUMBUS, OH - OCTOBER 29: Austin Carr /

Two New England Patriots rookies could find themselves battling for the final roster spot if they continue to play as well as they did against the Jaguars.

Rookies Jacob Hollister and Austin Carr were both phenomenal for the New England Patriots Thursday night in preseason game No. 1 against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Right now, it seems like those two could be battling for the final roster spot before week 1 action against the Chiefs, but one may have a slight positional edge.

In their first NFL action, both Hollister and Carr made big plays. Tight end Jacob Hollister hauled in 7 receptions for 116 yards, while wide receiver Austin Carr caught 5 for 44 and a touchdown. His leaping grab in the end zone was one of the Patriots highlights of the night.

Carr says that the team works on scramble drills like that all the time.

"“As I was coming across the end zone, I was trying to make sure that I didn’t get pushed out. Scramble play. It’s never how you draw it up, but we do that drill every week and Jimmy threw a great ball, and I was able to go up and get it.”"

Hollister was not to be outshined though. He caught several passes where he immediately got drilled, but he was able to hold on to the ball.

The tight end also should off his athletic ability with an impressive leap over a Jaguars defender later in the game.

Tight end has the edge

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While both guys played well, I think Jacob Hollister has a better chance to make the New England Patriots roster. The team is loaded at wide receiver, so it’ll be a lot tougher for Carr. New England already has Brandin Cooks, Julian Edelman, Malcolm Mitchell, Chris Hogan, and Danny Amendola ahead of him on the roster. It’d be tough to leave one of those guys off in favor of Austin Carr, but I hope the team could find a way to keep him on the practice squad for an emergency situation.

Hollister has less competition for the No. 3 tight end job. Of course, Rob Gronkowski and Dwayne Allen are cemented at the top of the roster, but beyond that, it’s an open competition. Hollister is up against mainly Matt Lengel and James O’Shaughnessy for that spot on the roster. Both did not play in the first preseason game, and Hollister took advantage. Sam Cotton was the only other tight end to catch a pass in the game, but he had just one on 2 targets for 22 yards.

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In a game where some defensive players struggled, two offensive rookies were able to pick up the slack. It will be fun to see how both Hollister and Carr progress through the rest of the preseason, and if one of them makes this New England Patriots roster.