It feels like the NFL offseason just started yesterday, but the final days of August mean that the regular season is right around the corner. The Patriots have one final exhibition game remaining as they’re scheduled to pay a visit to the Tennessee Titans at Nissan Stadium this Friday.
All eyes will be on the Pats to see if they can head into the 2023 NFL season with some momentum. After opening the exhibition slate with a loss, they managed to secure a 21-17 win over the Green Bay Packers this past weekend.
Although the preseason finale is relatively meaningless, it’s important to bubble players as it’s their final opportunity to crack the 53-man roster. If certain players don’t deliver this weekend, they could be in for a season-long ride on the ‘Practice Squad Express’ or even lose their jobs altogether.
Here’s a look at three Patriots who can clinch a roster spot in Friday’s preseason finale.
3 Patriots Roster Projections
1. Sidy Sow, OT
Sidy Sow is one Patriot who’s been making noise throughout the offseason. The offensive tackle — taken 117th overall in April — began training camp in a reserve role, but his play in practice quickly saw him in competition for a starting job.
Sow looked like he was on his way to being a 53-man lock when he played 88.5% of offensive snaps in the preseason opener against the Houston Texans. His performance was also impressive, especially how he handled 2023 third-overall pick Will Anderson Jr.
Unfortunately, Sow didn’t do a good job of following up on that performance when he faced the Packers. He looked out of place at times throughout the night, even surrendering a sack. It likely has to do with the fact that he hasn’t been an everyday tackle since his high school days.
Sow can’t afford another lackluster performance on Saturday night if he wants to make his case to Bill Belichick. The Titans were a middle-of-the-pack team when it came to the pass rush last season, so there’s no excuse for the 25-year-old not to stand his ground at Nissan Stadium.
If he looks more like he did in the first preseason game, chances are Sow will have a job protecting Mac Jones this fall.