Patriots Joint Practice Observations: Tom Brady, Brandin Cooks Connect Deep

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FOXBORO, Mass. — Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles wasn’t as bad as advertised Monday in joint practices with the New England Patriots.

That was the biggest takeaway. The second biggest is Brandin Cooks is as good as advertised and provides an element the Patriots legitimately haven’t possessed since Randy Moss was in his prime.

Cooks has speed to burn, and he knows how to use it, unlike other wide receivers with fast 40-yard dash times the Patriots have brought in over the years.

Though he had a drop on a deep pass from quarterback Tom Brady and miscommunication caused an interception from the Patriots starting quarterback on a free play, Cooks hauled in two deep touchdowns and did his best Odell Beckham Jr. impression with a one-handed snag in the end zone.

Here are the rest of our joint practice observations.

— Brady went 17 of 27 with an interception in 11-on-11 drills and was 24 of 38 with an interception overall. Backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo went 3 of 6 in 11-on-11 drills and was 6 of 10 overall. Jacoby Brissett received limited reps but was 3 of 7 with an interception in 11-on-11s.

— Cooks wasn’t the only Patriots player with a case of the dropsies. Tight end Rob Gronkowski, wide receiver Devin Lucien and running back James White had two drops apiece. Wide receivers Tony Washington and Julian Edelman each had one drop.

— Patriots cornerbacks Jonathan Jones, Justin Coleman and Kenny Moore and safeties Patrick Chung, Devin McCourty and Jason Thompson had pass breakups. Thompson gets his hand on a lot of footballs for a guy who barely played safety in college.

— Cornerback Malcolm Butler picked off Bortles. Bortles and Jags backup quarterback Chad Henne went a combined 16 of 23 with the one interception.

— Jaguars cornerback A.J. Bouye got the best of Chris Hogan and Cooks in 1-on-1 drills. Lucien toasted Jaguars cornerback Tyler Patmon during those same drills.

— Defensive end Trey Flowers, defensive tackles Adam Butler and Josh Augusta and linebacker Harvey Langi each won both of their 1-on-1 drill battles with Jaguars offensive linemen.

— Wide receiver Matthew Slater was the lone Patriots absence at joint practice with the Jaguars.

— Linebacker Dont’a Hightower (physically unable to perform list), defensive tackle Alan Branch (PUP) and offensive tackle Andrew Jelks (non-football injury list) were present in sweats but worked on a side field away from the rest of their teammates.

— Safety David Jones, offensive tackle Nate Solder, running back Mike Gillislee, tight end James O’Shaughnessy and wide receiver Cody Hollister also were limited and worked on the side field.

Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images

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