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Live Blog: Pats/Panthers Preseason Week Three

The Patriots and the Panthers battle tonight in the preseason Week Three dress rehearsal. Tom Brady is expected to play.


14:55- The Patriots defense is the first to take the field and will be tested by 2015 MVP Cam Newton. There is plenty to watch for tonight as the Patriots try to set their roster.

14:05- Strong coverage from the Patriots secondary on third and long and New England picks up the three-and-out. Not a strong pass rush, but that may be by design to keep Newton in the pocket.

13:47- Garoppolo gets the start and hits Chris Hogan on a play action pass. Hogan looked good on that play. Tyler Gaffney followed with a strong 12 yard run on second down. 

11:21- Terrible throw by Garoppolo on third down, and the mistake was on him. Edelman sat and waited for the pass, which he always does, but Garoppolo led him and it should have been picked. Gostkowski missed the field goal to cap of a drive that looked very promising but ended ugly. 

9:39- Anthony Johnson with the sack as he continues to make a push for a roster spot. The Patriots take over at the Panthers 35.

9:15- Julian Edelman gets called for a stupid holding penalty and negates a strong eight yard run by Gaffney. Gaffney looks good tonight against one of the best defenses in football.

8::23- Garoppolo can't find anyone on 2nd and 18, although there were guys open, and on 3rd and 18 he couldn't avoid the blitz and went down at the line of scrimmage. He needs to do a better job of making his reads; he looks nervous.

6:42- On 2nd and 8, Cam Newton took a shot down the field, but Logan Ryan had great coverage and made the interception. Ryan had a strong year in 2015, and if he has another big year in 2016, he'll demand big $$. I wouldn't run out and buy his jersey.

5:20- James White is absolutely useless in the run game. Yes, that block was missed, but White just gets mauled every time he's tackled on a rush. The Patriots were forced to punt yet again in this ugly preseason game.

3:21- Malcolm Butler with a great hit to break up a pass to Ed Dickson down the seam. It was a clean hit, but Dickson did get hurt on the play. Good help from Butler as he continues to develop his game. 

2:32- Jamie Collins forces Cam Newton out of bounds short of the first down and the Panthers are faced with a fourth and two. The Panthers lined up to go for it but called a timeout. 

1:56- Good pass rush from the Patriots forces Newton to roll out and miss the throw to Greg Olsen. The Patriots will take over at the Panthers 49.

1:25- Brady enters the game and proceeds to hit Aaron Dobson for a 37-yard catch and throw. Good throw and good catch on the play.

:27- Brady just missed Martellus Bennett on 3rd and five (it should have been caught, but the throw was a little off) and New England has to settle for three points. Patriots 3, Panthers 0

:00- That's the end of the first quarter with the Patriots ahead by three. One thing was clear in that quarter- when Tom Brady's career ends, Patriots fans are going to sorely miss him. His snaps compared to Garoppolo were like night and day. Brady looked good, even if the throw to Bennett was slightly high.


15:00- The Panthers are trying to put together some kind of drive, and it starts with picking up first downs, which Kelvin Benjamin just did.

11:45- Interception! Devin McCourty picks off the deflected pass and the Patriots offense takes over. 

11:00- Two very strong runs by Gaffney moves the Patriots offense to the Panthers 28. Gaffney looks like the lead back if there was a real game today.

10:02- Touchdown, Patriots! Tom Brady threw a perfect pass to Chris Hogan for the 33 yard touchdown. What. A. Throw. If Brady wasn't suspended for four games, there would be discussions of possibly going undefeated. New England went for two but Brady couldn't connect with Aaron Dobson. Patriots 9, Panthers 0

8:31- The Patriots defense continues its stout play and force the Panthers to punt. Cyrus Jones had a strong return on the punt and New England takes over at their 40.

8:20- Legarrette Blount just hurdled a Carolina defender; don't tell me he's not a special athlete. Wow. 

7:07- A.J. Derby with a rare drop on third down, and Gostkowski came in and shanked a 52-yard attempt. Tough sequence there for New England as the Panthers offense will take over. 

6:46- Derek Anderson sighting! The old veteran hits two passes in a row and the Panthers offense finally has some life.

3:54- Interception, Patriots! This time Duron Harmon gets the pick, the third of the night for the Patriots. Terrible throw by Derek Anderson.

3:54- Brady returns for another series.

3:05- Jailbreak pass rush swarms Brady and the Patriots are forced to punt. Brady looked great at times, but he did finish 3-9 and he almost threw an interception.

2:19- Ted Ginn with a Ted Ginn-drop and the Panthers are forced to punt again. Cam Newton was in on the last drive, but it didn't help.

2:08- Garoppolo comes back in and gets an opportunity to run the two-minute drill. 

1:46- Garoppolo was able to avoid the sack on third down, but he fumbled when he tried to run and almost cost New England. The Patriots are forced to punt and the Panthers will go back on offense again. 

1:04- ANOTHER three-and-out for the Panthers, which were led by their MVP QB Cam Newton. Ugly first half for the Panthers offense.

:56- The Patriots take a knee and will run out the clock on the first half. Ugly half, but the Patriots did have some positives.



Third Quarter

12:06- The Patriots are faced with 4th and 1, and what looked like an easy one gets stuffed and the Panthers take over. For a big guy, Blount sure does struggle in short yardage situations, which is odd because he gets it done at the goal line.

7:49- After a long drive by the Panthers, the Patriots defense steps up and forces a field goal as the Panther cut the lead to six. Patriots 9, Panthers 3

5:26- Cam Newton is still in the game as the Panthers try to get into rhythm on offense. Every time they've taken a step forward tonight, they have to take a step back. 

4:10- Stellar defense is followed up by an excellent return by Cyrus Jones. Jones was a great returner at Alabama, and as he gains more experience in the NFL, he'll probably develop into one of the best in the pros. The Patriots offense takes over at the Panthers 30.

3:05- Patriots Prospect Alert! DJ Foster is in the game, and he just made his first catch on a screen and picks up a first down. Jacoby Brissett has also checked into the game.

1:29- Touchdown, Patriots! Jacoby Brissett hits DeAndre Carter from 12 yards out to give the Patriots a 13-point lead. After the great return, the offense, keyed by two catches from DJ Foster, went to work and got the job done. Patriots 16, Panthers 3


14:17- Jacoby Brissett continues to run the offense as the Patriots look to put together a game-clinching playoff drive. 

11:41- The Patriots offense is forced to punt and the Panthers look to try and make this a game. Expect to see Derek Anderson under center.

7:30- Jacoby Brissett is putting on a clinic, and DJ Foster looks like a player that has to be on the roster. 

5:27- Brissett can't get the Pats into the end zone, but he was able to lead them into scoring position and Stephen Gostkowski kicked a 30 yard field goal. Patriots 19, Panthers 3

5:00- Joe Webb takes over at quarterback for the Panthers. Webb played for the Vikings before making his way to the Panthers. The Panther backup quarterbacks are...not good. 

:27- Another garbage time touchdown for the Panthers to try and make this a game. The Panthers went for two, converted, and now are in position to attempt an onside kick. Patriots 19, Panthers 17

:00-The onside kick sailed out of bounds and the Patriots win, 19-17.


Thank you for joining us tonight to watch the Patriots improve to 3-0 on the preseason. Be sure to join us next week as the Patriots travel to New York to take on their nemesis, the Giants.

Follow me @chris_simoneau

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