Pats-Eagles 2nd Quarter: Leaky O-line; Eagles penalty-heavy

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Pats-Eagles 2nd Quarter: Leaky O-line; Eagles penalty-heavy

FOXBORO -- What a mess for Philadelphia. The Eagles only accumulated more total yards (94) than penalty yards (86) with little over two minutes to play in the second quarter. The team went into the half with 10 for 91 yards. Consequently, New England was winning the time of possession battle with almost double the clock used.

And yet the score was tied, 14-14.

The Patriots offensive line looked ugly and a muffed punt by a rookie didn't help. To be honest, New England was lucky to not be losing.

For all of Mallett's first quarter struggle (6-12 for 60 yards), he started the second with a touchdown. The ball was very well-placed to DE-turned-TE Alex Silvestro just inside the end zone.

Jerod Mayo, ever the captain, was helping Jeff Tarpinian line up before the snap.

Will Allen and Nate Ebner were your safeties.

Little dime package on third-and-10. Will Allen almost came up with an interception thanks to some nice pressure by Trevor Scott.

Brandon Bolden, an undrafted rookie, muffed a punt. Akeem Jordan put on the speed, blew past two Patriots defensive backs, and recovered for Philadelphia.

A slight scuffle broke out when Brandon Boykin shoved Marquice Cole next to the fumble recovery pig pile. Cole pushed back. Things broke up quickly.

Vereen and Donte' Stallworth were back to receive on New England's next kickoff return. Patriots seem to like this pair. Vereen got 22 yards out of the effort.

Brian Hoyer came in with just over 10 minutes remaining in the second quarter. His offensive line: Nate Solder at LT, Donald Thomas at LG, Nick McDonald at C, Jeremiah Warren at RG, Marcus Cannon at RT.

Ryan Mallett's second half: 2-3 for 27 yards and a touchdown.

Phillip Hunt paid his 1.75 and used Cannon as a turnstile, blowing by and sacking Hoyer for a Patriots fumble. Philadelphia got the ball on New England's 12.

Brandon Bolden got a lot of looks in the second quarter -- he ran five times and was targeted for three passes on Hoyer's second drive.

When the Patriots needed a big first down, they went to Branch. (First quarter: third-and-5 with 51 seconds left. Branch got 20.) His second catch was on a second quarter third-and-13; pass was good for 17. Makes sense when you think no Welker, Hernandez, no Gronkowski, no Lloyd.

More trouble for the offensive line as Cannon wasn't the only sprung leak. Warren and McDonald got blown up by Cedric Thornton. Hoyer got taken down hard.

Josh Barrett came in at safety in the last 30 seconds of the quarter.

I do believe Nate Ebner had four consecutive practice days with at least one pick last week. He had 34-yards on the red zone INT return Monday night.

Belichick: Patriots have caught up after starting offseason 'five weeks behind'

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Belichick: Patriots have caught up after starting offseason 'five weeks behind'

FOXBORO -- After starting the offseason "five weeks behind," as Bill Belichick put it, the Patriots have caught up. 

"I think we’re probably caught up to where we are now," he said before Thursday's OTA practice at Gillette Stadium. "I think it’s being behind in draft, free agency and that type of thing.

"I think at this point, we’re ready for OTAs. We’ll be ready for training camp. I think that part of it we’ll be on schedule on. It’s the catching up on all the spring projects, draft and free agency. It’s the initial part of it."

Belichick made headlines on the morning after winning his fifth Lombardi Trophy with the Patriots when he said, "As of today, and as great as today feels and as great as today is, in all honesty we're five weeks behind in the 2017 season to most teams in the league. Fortunately we have a great personnel staff

"Look, in a couple weeks we're going to be looking at the combine, obviously the draft, all-star games have already occurred, and in a month we're into free agency, not to mention all the internal Patriots players (whose) contracts are up and we're going to have to work with in some form or fashion like every team in the league does."

Leaning on evaluations of players that began in the build-up to previous drafts, Belichick and his staff opted to trade away some of this year's draft capital for veterans like Brandin Cooks, Kony Ealy and Dwayne Allen. They also gave up their fifth-rounder to sign restricted free agent Mike Gillislee.

Before heading out to the team's third practice of the week -- the first week the Patriots were allowed to introduce helmets and run offense versus defense periods -- Belichick said that part of his focus will be spent on finding out how those players he picked up this offseason are progressing.

"Yeah, that’s definitely part of it," he said. "Seeing the new players, how they’re doing and also how they’re doing relevant to the rest of the other players that I’m a little more familiar with. Again, each year is a new year, so even though we’ve seen some of these guys multiple years, it’s still starting all over again, seeing where they are, how they’re progressing in their training and preparation for the season."