Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Offensive Position Battles - Patriots Training Camp

Tom Brady (7)
Matt Cassell (2)
Vinny Testaverde (20)

Matt Gutierrez (R)

Tom Brady will be the starting quarterback without a doubt and unless an injury occurs out of the blue it will remain this way for the entire season. Matt Cassell will get his reps during the season when/if the Patriots are blowing certain teams out because it appears he is going to be Brady's replacement one day and absolutely needs to get in there. Vinny Testaverde will likely only come in near the end of the season in a meaningless game to continue his touchdown streak. I highly doubt Matt Gutierrez ever sees the field unless the Patriots decide that he is more suitable than Matt Cassell to be the 2nd-string quarterback, unlikely.

HB Laurence Maroney (1)
HB Kevin Faulk (8)
HB Sammy Morris (7)
HB Justin Hairston (R)
HB Quinton Smith (R)
FB Heath Evans (6)
FB Quadtrine Hill (R)

Laurence Maroney will be starting HB and get most of the carries. Kevin Faulk will take 3rd downs when Maroney needs a rest. I'm not aware of how big of a role any of the other HB's will have but Heath Evans will be starting FB and get most of his time there. There will be instances though where defensive players do come in though and play FB in a goalline situation though, as Bill Belichick likes to do.

Wide Receiver
Randy Moss (10)
Donte Stallworth (6)
Troy Brown (15)
Reche Caldwell (6)
Chad Jackson (2)
Wes Welker (4)
Jabar Gaffney (6)
Kelley Washington (5)
Bam Childress (R)
CJ Jones (2)
Kelvin Kight (2)
Chris Dunlap (R)

Randy Moss will be the #1 receiver, with Donte Stallworth being the #2. The rest is a crapshoot. I honestly think that Reche Caldwell will be back as well as Troy Brown and Chad Jackson. Wes Welker will be on special teams and be a slot receiver. It's gonna be tough for Gaffney, Washington, Childress, Jones, Kight and Dunlap to make the team.

Tight End
Benjamin Watson (3)
Kyle Brady (13)
David Thomas (2)
Garrett Mills (2)
Matt Kranchick (3)

Benjamin Watson has proven to be an excellent blocker and should get more time now that Daniel Graham has left. Kyle Brady of course will get a good amount of time too because of his veteran experience. David Thomas will have the same role he had last year and Mills/Kranchick probably won't play.

Offensive Line
LT Matt Light (6)
LG Logan Mankins (2)

C Dan Koppen (4)
RG Stephen Neal (5)
RT Nick Kaczur (2)
T Wesley Britt (1)
T Ryan O’Callaghan (1)
C/G Brian Barthelmes (R)

C/G Mike Elgin (R)
C/G Russ Hochstein (6)
C/G Gene Mruczkowski (3)
C/G Billy Yates (3)
G/T Corey Hilliard (R)
G/T Clint Oldenburg (R)

There is a lot of depth on the line and it is one of the best in the league. It is also fairly young. I have a feeling the only 100% safe jobs are Matt Light and Dan Koppen. The line will probably be the same as it is going into next season though. I expect some of the rookies to impress though. Also, I see Ryan O'Callaghan and Billy Yates making a run for a starting spot and Gene Mruczkowski getting most of the playing time off the bench.

Defensive Position Battle Preview will be Posted on July 25th.

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