Patriots notes: Jimmy Garoppolo not sharp with first-teamers
FOXBORO — After a rough day Friday, Jimmy Garoppolo worked with most of the first team offense yesterday during another intrasquad scrimmage.
Along with Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Dobson, Jimmy G was handed Chris Hogan, Martellus Bennett, Malcolm Mitchell, LeGarrette Blount and James Develin to try and generate some offense. The results?
Garoppolo was a bit better, but still not as sharp or as crisp as he needs to be. He completed 15-of-24 throws, with a touchdown, hitting Bennett in the end zone with a nice touch pass.
He just hasn’t seemed quite as comfortable in the scrimmage setting. But offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels is constantly in his ear, and at one point, tight end Bennett was chatting him up, perhaps trying to help calm him.
The very next drive, the two connected for the score.
Tom Brady, meanwhile, who was lights-out Friday, played with the second- and third-teamers yesterday. He hit on just 13-of-24 passes with a touchdown and a pick, but he did pull out a victory, hitting DeAndre Carter for a touchdown, then A.J. Derby for the two-point conversion.
Brady ran up and slapped Derby, who barely made it in.
“It felt good, it was a good play,” Derby said. “Just getting ready for the preseason game on Thursday.”
During his press briefing, coach Bill Belichick said it was an important week for the players as they head into joint practice sessions with the Saints prior to Thursday night’s game.
“It’s time to start evaluating. We can’t keep pushing it back,” Belichick said. “At some point we’ve got to make some decisions and see where things are. I think we’ve given everybody a pretty good chance to learn what to do, to have an opportunity to rep it. Now we’re getting into some competitive situations with us, but then against these other teams there will be not just the game but other practice opportunities as well to evaluate. Those will all be valuable.
“We’ll just see how it goes.”
Hall of a memory
Belichick also reminisced about the 2000 Hall of Fame game, which saw the Patriots beat the San Francisco 49ers, 20-0.
Back then, it was a chance for the Pats to compare their sixth-round choice, Brady, to 49ers picks Tim Rattay (seventh round) and Giovanni Carmazzi (third).
“That was an interesting game because we started out a little bit on the Tim Rattay trail and (late quarterbacks coach) Dick Rehbein went down there and worked him out at Louisiana Tech, or wherever he was from. They ran a big spread-offense and he had a lot of big numbers and all of that and we kind of liked him and thought that might be a late-round pick,” Belichick said. “Then we got on Brady, so it was kind of Brady and Rattay in that seventh round. Then, as luck would have it, we took Brady and they took Rattay and then they were playing against each other, and so we kind of got a look at that, those two quarterbacks in the sixth round, or whatever Brady was … I guess we took the right one.” …
Along with Julian Edelman, tight end Clay Harbor was also removed from the active/PUP list. Harbor had been a participant in all the spring camps, and is a good bet to make the 53-man roster. Like Edelman, he only participated in the team drills.