This Thursday, there is an NFL Preseason matchup between the Detroit Lions and the New England Patriots. These teams will face off at about 7:30 PM. This is game one of the preseason for both teams, which will take place at Ford Field.
Patriots Start Title Defense
The New England Patriots enter the 2019 season with hopes of defending their Super Bowl trophy. Specifically, the Patriots were able to defeat the Los Angeles Rams last season and ended up lifting the Lombardi Trophy. Although this is just preseason, this game could be quite important for New England as it will look to find depth to several key positions which could help the team succeed in the long run. Specifically, the Patriots have a serious question mark at the Tight End position as future Hall of Famer Rob Gronkowski shockingly announced his retirement during the offseason. As a result, New England decided to bring back Benjamin Watson to be his replacement. However, Watson is 38 years old and one has to wonder how many snaps he could provide New England as a result. With Watson at the number one spot on the depth chart, look for Matt LaCosse to try to make an impact on this game as the number two tight end on the depth chart.
Last season, the Patriots went 3-1 in the preseason. More importantly, star quarterback Tom Brady did not play in the first game of preseason last year and that is expected to occur again this year. In his absence, backup quarterback Brian Hoyer is expected to take the bulk of the snaps from behind center in this g
The Patriots currently have three key injuries that they are dealing with leading up to this game. Specifically, wide receiver Cameron Meredith has already been declared out for this game while running back Rex Burkhead and tight end Lance Kendricks are both listed as questionable but are expected to sit due to precautionary measures.
Detroit Looks For Brighter Days Ahead
The Detroit Lions enter the 2019 season with hopes of becoming significantly more competitive in the NFC North division. Specifically, the Lions only won six games last season and finished last in the division. On the bright side, that poor record led to an early first-round pick in the NFL Draft and the Lions used the 8th pick to select tight end T.J. Hockenson. Although this is just preseason, this game could be quite important for Detroit as it will be able to see Hockenson in action and the added reps should lead to a smoother transition for him to play well in the regular season. Since this is a home game, it could allow Hockenson to develop more confidence in front of the home crowd.
Last season, the Lions went 1-3 in the preseason. More importantly, star quarterback Matthew Stafford did not play in the first game of preseason last year and that is expected to occur again this year. In his absence, backup quarterback Tom Savage is expected to take the bulk of the snaps from behind center in this game with David Fales playing in the second half
The Lions currently have just one key injury on their depth chart leading up to this game. Specifically, cornerback Teez Tabor has already been declared questionable for this game which resulted in the Lions signing cornerback Tarvarus McFadden this past week. With more important games up next, expect Tabor to miss this game due to precautionary measures.
“It’s always good when you bring guys in that you’re familiar with and kind of already have a background from that standpoint. They understand what – for me as a head coach, what I expect and what we’re trying to do.The culture here is strictly Lions culture. We’re trying to build our own culture here, and we’re just trying to bring in the right guys. Doesn’t matter if it’s Jesse James or Justin Coleman, who spent time at Seattle in a totally different system or Oday Aboushi. All those guys are brought in from a veteran stand point to help us get better – Mike Daniels is another guy. Just trying to bring in the guys that we think are going to understand what we’re trying to do and get on board and go in that direction. For us it’s about building the Lions.”
That was Matt Patricia when asked whether adding some former New England players to the Lions roster was helping to impact their locker room culture.
The first preseason game is usually a signal that most of the starters will sit, including Stafford. That means a lot of time for David Fales and Tom Savage. Both will be battling for the backup job, though Savage has seen most of the second team reps in practice. Neither player has a lot of experience in the regular season. Fales has played in just three career games, while Savage has played in 13.
- Lions are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games on fieldturf.
- Lions are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 home games.
- Patriots are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games on fieldturf.
- Patriots are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 Thursday games.