New England Patriots: 3 losers from first preseason game

Cam Newton #1 of the New England Patriots (Photo by Kathryn Riley/Getty Images)
Cam Newton #1 of the New England Patriots (Photo by Kathryn Riley/Getty Images) /
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New England Patriots
Cam Newton #1 of the New England Patriots (Photo by Kathryn Riley/Getty Images) /

New England Patriots loser No. 1: Cam Newton

In all honesty, Cam Newton’s actual performance wasn’t bad at all. He went 4/7, picked up 49 yards in the air, and led the team to a field goal on the second drive. It was what happened afterwards that makes him the top loser here.

Newton only played two drives in this one, which was expected. He was relieved by Mac Jones, who promptly came in and played through the third quarter. The fact that Jones was given such a long look probably doesn’t bode well for Newton’s future.

First things first though, it’s clear Newton will be the Week 1 starter for this team. Coach Bill Belichick has said it from day one, and Newton only playing two drives only confirms that notion. But it’s become clearer and clearer that the gap between Newton and Jones has diminished quite a bit.

The likelihood that Jones will replace Newton later this season grows with each snap he gets, especially in preseason action. Maybe the Pats feel as if Jones is behind and that he needs more snaps to get better, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. Jones had a solid camp, and now the coaching staff wants to see how he handles live action snaps.

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Jones didn’t necessarily do anything that will jump off the screen, and he typically limited his passes to short routes and check downs. But he did a great job of controlling the offense on the night, and that in turn hurts Newton.

The fact that Jones played all the way through the third quarter only proves this notion. Jones made his mark in training camp, and now it’s time to see what he can do against some real competition. Every snap he gets throughout the rest of the preseason makes it more and more likely that he will eventually takes Newton’s spot, which is why Newton is the biggest loser from New England’s first preseason game.