The New England Patriots are on the road again.
After being in Motown last week for practices and a preseason matchup with the Detroit Lions, the Patriots are running it back this week in Music City for joint sessions and an exhibition game against the Tennessee Titans.
These nine players have the most on the line as the Patriots practice against familiar foes.
QB JARRETT STIDHAM
Stidham is having a great summer as a fourth-round pick straight out of Auburn. He’s been impressive in training camp practices, and his preseason debut against the Detroit Lions was a rousing success. Perhaps most impressively, Stidham seems to be improving as his summer should be getting more difficult.
Let’s see if he can stay on that upward trajectory in practices against the Titans.
WR BRAXTON BERRIOS
Berrios is firmly on the roster bubble as he aims to prove the Patriots need to keep him on the roster as their next slot receiver.
Berrios got off to a slow start this summer but shined in practices against the Lions and had a solid preseason performance. He’ll have a tough matchup against former Patriots slot cornerback Logan Ryan this week.
WR JAKOBI MEYERS
There’s good reason everyone and their mother is high on Meyers. He’s looking like he’ll be a Week 1 starter in New England’s offense.
At the same time, he has almost nowhere to go but down after catching six passes for 69 yards with two touchdowns against the Lions. Meyers has to stay on that hot streak.
WR DONTRELLE INMAN
Inman, like Berrios, didn’t stand out much in the spring or the first couple weeks of training camp. He’s starting to string together some successful practices, and he was decent against the Lions. With a strong week, Inman can go from being a roster longshot to on the bubble.
TE ERIC SAUBERT
The Patriots acquired Saubert in a trade with the Atlanta Falcons this week. He’ll be thrown right into the fire in joint practices with the Titans. He’s entering a wide-open tight end group, and he has the best combination of size and speed on the roster.
Can he catch and block, though?
TE RYAN IZZO
Izzo looked great as a blocker last week against the Lions but dropped a would-be touchdown pass from Stidham.
Izzo might make the Patriots’ roster as a blocker one way or the other, but if he can earn New England’s quarterbacks’ trust, he could also be involved in the passing game.
LT ISAIAH WYNN
Wynn finally got involved in contact drills this week. Expect to see him continue to compete in 1-on-1s and 11-on-11s against the Titans. Wynn is the projected starting left tackle. He can really only lose that job.
OLB SHILIQUE CALHOUN
Calhoun surprisingly has been running with starters in training camp. We’ll be keeping a close eye on him to see how he fares as a pass rusher. He had an unblocked sack against the Lions.
CB DUKE DAWSON
Not to sound harsh, but Dawson probably had the weakest performance in the Patriots’ first preseason game, letting up two big plays. He hasn’t stood out in training camp either.
As a 2018 second-round pick, he’s surprisingly on the roster bubble, competing for a spot with Keion Crossen.
Thumbnail photo via Ed Wolfstein/USA TODAY Sports Images