Patriots’ offense impresses right off the bat


There are lots of things to worry about in this world.

The Patriots’ offense is not one of them.

New England scored touchdowns on each of its first drives in Friday night’s preseason opener at Philadelphia. Both were 80-yard marches. On the first drive, the Patriots emphasized the run, which made sense, what with Stevan Ridley rumbling 62 yards on the game’s first play. Five rushes later, the Patriots had their first score on a one-yard Ridley run.

On the Patriots’ next drive, they emphasized the pass. How did their revamped receiving corps fare? Just fine, as it turned out.

Rookie Kenbrell Thompkins got a lot of work, catching all four passes thrown his way. Fellow first-year player Aaron Dobson had a 23-yard reception on a perfect throw from quarterback Tom Brady. Thompkins came out of his break, and the ball was there. It was a beautiful thing.

So too was the Patriots’ second touchdown. Running back Shane Vereen split out left, drawing linebacker Mychal Kendricks in coverage. Vereen gave Kendricks a stutter-step, then sprinted toward the left corner of the endzone. Brady placed the ball toward the back pylon, and Vereen reached out and snagged it, getting both feet in bounds.

This ended Brady’s evening on appropriate note. On this night, his offense was in control against a work-in-progress Philadelphia defense.