|Patriots lead Jaguars at halftime||08.11.11 at 9:06 pm ET|
FOXBORO — After 30 minutes of football at Gillette, the Patriots lead the Jaguars, 19-9. Stephen Gostkowski made a 43-yard field goal in the final seconds of the half to add to the lead.
Taylor Price, who did not have a touchdown last season and had only three catches for 41 yards , made a nice grab deep in the end zone on a pass from Brian Hoyer in the second quarter to make it 13-6. Given that Price had to leap to make the catch and had his momentum take him out of the end zone, he did a good job making sure he got two feet in. The play, like Stevan Ridley‘s first-quarter touchdown, was reviewed, and the initial touchdown ruling stood. The PAT attempt went dreadfully wrong, ending in Zoltan Mesko kicking the ball out of bounds around the 50-yard-line.
Following the touchdown from Price, the Jaguars got great field position from a kick return from Deji Karim, who dodged the likes of Brandon Meriweather and Jonathan Wilhite before finally being taken down by Wilhite at the 18-yard-line. Using a four-man front, the Pats forced the Jaguars to kick a field goal, and Josh Scobee converted on a 29-yarder to make it 13-9 in the Patriots’ favor.
The Patriots have used a four-man front the vast majority of the time thus far, though they did use a three-man front for a prolonged stretch during Jacksonville’s seventh drive. They stuck Landon Cohen in between Mark Anderson and Steve Williams, with Rob Ninkovich setting the edge.
On the whole, Hoyer (15-21, 171 yards, TD) looked good, as he made a beautiful 43-yard pass to Matthew Slater, who is undoubtedly fighting for a spot on the roster. (The aforementioned catch came against old friend Terence Wheatley, who was drafted in the second round by the Pats in 2006). Hoyer did make some ill-advised passes, however, and put Julian Edelman in danger with one toss in the first quarter.
Here’s a play the Pats would like to have back: After forcing a three-and-out on the Jaguars’ fifth drive, a Richard Medlin neutral zone infraction with the teams lined up for the punt created a first-down for the Jaguars. The Jaguars would eventually end up punting.
Rookie Nate Solder has been in for every offensive snap for the Patriots. By my count, here’s how many snaps the running backs have had:
Stevan Ridley: 22
Danny Woodhead: 12
Sammy Morris: 1
And, again, by one man’s count, the number of four-man fronts vs. three-man fronts:
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