Joey B. and Mattes Chop It Up About the Patriots’ Chopping Block

Joey B: Ok Mattes, here we are.

To kick this off. Who do you see, Good performance or not, off the Pats roster after this game?

Mattes: Brian Hoyer. While a lot of people may be averse to placing so much confidence in the preseason play of a rookie QB, the fact is that Jarrett Stidham has looked pretty sharp. This is also a kid who was once viewed as a first- or second-round pick before a “down” season at Auburn last year. And above all, there are too many other depth questions at other positions throughout the roster to keep three QBs – something, by the way, that Belichick has done only TWICE in the past decade. It would just be straight foolish. I’d much rather keep an extra WR or DL than keep a mediocre-at-best backup QB who may never even need to see the field. I’d actually be pretty pissed if they do keep Hoyer. There’s no reason for him to be here anymore.

Joey B:  Agreed 100% on Hoyer. My only caveat would be I could see them keeping until after final cuts, which gives him less of a chance of getting snatched up right away and us a better chance of resigning him should something to Stidham or….I’m not saying his name.

I personally think it’s curtains for Duke Dawson. Despite his size and balls skills he just never has been able to actually cover anyone. Much like your stance on Hoyer, why keep an extra player here when we could use depth somewhere else.

You mentioned the WR group. Give me your 5 and 6 man versions of our corps after this week. Who stays and who goes?

Mattes: I agree; I don’t expect them to cut Hoyer tomorrow. In fact, I could see them trying to trade him to someone first. (Maybe the Colts?? I mean, they already have one former Pats backup QB, so why not another?) And I totally agree on Dawson, too. He was a real talented kid coming out of Florida, but injuries set him back pretty far, and there is just too much talent and depth at the corner position otherwise. Especially with guys like Jonathan Jones and Keion Crossen (one of my guys I said to watch in camp this year) playing so well – not to mention rookie JoeJuan Williams – I just don’t see how Dawson makes the final cut.

My prediction for the final group at wide receiver is as follows: Julian Edelman, Josh Gordon, N’Keal Harry, Phillip Dorsett, Jakobi Meyers, and Demaryius Thomas. Some may be surprised to see Thomas, who just got back onto the field this week, make the roster, but apparently the team loves him. He’s a great veteran influence in a very young/inexperienced group outside of Jules, and I think they want to see if the former perennial Pro Bowler still has something left in the tank before cutting bait. Also, people might be shocked to see Berrios not make the cut. To be honest, though, he really hasn’t done much to stand out this summer, and there are even reports that he’s struggled mightily in terms of getting past coverage and muscling through defenders in practice. He’s displayed some solid punt-return ability, but to this point he’s not really proven why he’s any more special than any other “slot guy with potential” throughout the league. Hopefully the Pats get lucky and can slide him to the practice squad, because there’s some potential there. But I don’t think he’s quite NFL ready yet.

Joey B: No arguments here, I don’t think Berrios makes it either. He just hasn’t panned out plain and simple. Also, am I wrong in remembering he has actually muffed a punt or two aside from his decent returning resume so far?

The only threat to Thomas might be Gunner Olszewski. the team seems high on the kid and he has that “scrappiness” they like. If they don’t keep him then definitely expect them to try and stash him on the practice squad.

The other overload of players I see us having is on the D-Line. Any surprising stayers or goers there?

Mattes: I just can’t see Olszewski making the cut. He’s a cool story, but he’s a flash in the pan. Maybe he’s another one who can sneak onto the P-squad or something.

And there aren’t really any big surprise cuts that I’m expecting. I would’ve said Duron Harmon, because while he has been a solid role player in the secondary for years, I think he’s hit his ceiling and perhaps the staff might’ve been willing to try and get some more young talent on the roster. Further, I think newcomer Terrence Brooks has already won the staff over, and he’s a special teams stud. However, with the whole Pat Chung situation, I think Harmon is pretty much a lock to make the team now.

One surprise roster “make,” though, is DT Byron Cowart. Cowart is a former five-star recruit who the team drafted in the fifth round out of Maryland this year. Due to being misused by the coaching staff and other “issues,” he slipped a bit in the draft, but he has been a monster this summer. He really broke out against the Titans in the second preseason game, and scouts around the league are saying the Pats might have nabbed one of the biggest steals of the draft with him. Especially after the team cut bait with Mike Pennel last week, I’m excited to see what this Cowart kid could do with this opportunity.

Joey B: Hmm Harmon would be a surprise. He’s just always been rock solid and I think between him and the snaps J.McCourty has seen at Safety the Pats have any Chung absence covered. I can’t see them entrusting a newcomer like Brooks with the magnitude of Chung’s role.

Cowart has indeed been a stud. He might take Derek Rivers spot which is kind of a shame considering his promise coming out.

I kicked this thought around with Friend Of The Blog, Patty B., but I think Phillip Dorsett could be a surprise cut. I have no tangible evidence to support this, but Dorsett has always been a “one or two big plays” guy rather than a steady presence and so I wouldn’t be completely shocked if the Pats lets him go in favor of one of the young guns. I hope not though.

Either way things are going to get interesting over the next week. Hold onto ya butts.





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