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Replay: Patriots Unfiltered Tue Jul 23 - 02:01 AM | Wed Jul 24 - 10:25 AM

Game Notes: Mac Jones sets career highs in completions

Game notes and records from Patriots PR.

Patriots wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster (7).
Patriots wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster (7).

TEAM NOTES

  • Mac Jones sets career highs in completions (35) and attempts (54).
  • Jones has fifth 300-yard game (316).
  • With 3 TD passes, Jones has fourth straight game with at least two touchdown passes.
  • Kendrick Bourne tied career-high with two touchdown receptions.
  • First-round draft pick DB Christian Gonzalez starts, records sack and key 4th down pass breakup.

TEAM NOTES

PATRIOTS RECORD 10TH OPENING GAME WITH A 300-YARD PASSER

QB Mac Joes finished the game with 316 passing yards. It is the 10th time in team history that the Patriots had a 300-yard passer on opening day.

PATRIOTS HELD PHILADELPHIA TO JUST TWO FOURTH QUARTER SACKS

Philadelphia led the NFL with 70 sacks for an average of 4.0 sacks per game last season. The Patriots offense held the Eagles to just two sacks late in fourth quarter.

THREE 2023 ROOKIES MAKE OPENING DAY STARTS

Three 2023 draft picks were in the starting lineup with first-round pick CB Christian Gonzalez starting at cornerback, fourth-round pick OL Sidy Sow starting at right guard and fifth-round pick OL Atonio Mafi starting at left guard. Twenty-eight rookies have now started on opening day under Bill Belichick. Gonzalez, Sow and Mafi join five current Patriots to start as a rookie on opening day - Cole Strange (2022), Mac Jones (2021), Mike Onwenu (2020), Ja'Whaun Bentley (2018), David Andrews (2015)

ROOKIES IN THE STARTING LINEUP UNDER BILL BELICHICK WITH THE PATRIOTS

2023 – CB Christian Gonzalez (first-round), OL Sidy Sow (fourth-round) and OL Atonio Mafi (fifth-round)

2022 – OL Cole Strange (first-round)

2021 – QB Mac Jones (first-round)

2020 – OL Mike Onwenu (sixth-round)

2018 - LB Ja'Whaun Bentley (fifth-round)

2016- OL Joe Thuney (third-round), WR Malcolm Mitchell (fourth-round) and OL Ted Karras (sixth-round)

2015 – DL Malcom Brown (first-round), OL Tre Jackson (fourth-round) and OL David Andrews (rookie FA)

2013 – WR Kenbrell Thompkins (rookie free agent)

2012 – DL Chandler Jones (first-round) and LB Dont'a Hightower (first-round)

2011 – OL Nate Solder (first-round) and DB Ras-I Dowling (second-round)

2010- DB Devin McCourty (first-round), TE Rob Gronkowski (second-round) and TE Aaron Hernandez (fourth-round)

2008- LB Jerod Mayo (first-round)

2006 – OL Ryan O'Callaghan (fifth-round)

2005 -OL Logan Mankins (first-round)

2004 – DL Vince Wilfork (first-round) and TE Ben Watson (first-round)

2002- TE Daniel Graham (first-round)

2001 - DL Jace Sayler (rookie free agent)

ROOKIE KICKER AND ROOKIE PUNTER

The Patriots have a rookie kicker and a rookie punter in 2023 after drafting K Chad Ryland in the fourth round and P Bryce Baringer in the sixth round. Since 2000, eight NFL teams have had a rookie kicker and a rookie punter on the active roster for the season opening game: Cleveland Browns (2019), Miami Dolphins (2015), St. Louis Rams (2012), Philadelphia Eagles (2011), New York Jets (2005), Baltimore Ravens (2002), Dallas Cowboys (2000) and Oakland Raiders (2000). The Patriots are the first team since the 2000 Oakland Raiders to begin the year with a rookie kicker and punter that were selected in the same draft.

INDIVIDUAL NOTES

BILL BELICHICK KICKS OFF HIS 49th CONSECUTIVE SEASON

Bill Belichick began his 49th consecutive NFL season in 2023. The only other NFL coaches with at least 40 consecutive NFL coaching seasons are Dick LeBeau (45) and Tom Moore (41).

CONSECUTIVE SEASONS COACHING In the NFL

Coach Seasons

Bill Belichick - 49

Dick Lebeau - 45

Tom Moore - 41

BELICHICK BEGAN HIS 24th SEASON AS HEAD COACH OF THE NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

The 2023 season began Belichick's 24th season as head coach of the New England Patriots. Belichick is one of seven NFL coaches to coach one team for at least 20 seasons and is now in sole possession of fifth place on that list.

20-year head coaches with one team

Head Coach Team (Yrs)

George Halas - Chicago (40)

Curly Lambeau - Green Bay (29)

Tom Laundry - Dallas (29)

Don Shula - Miami (26)

Bill Belichick - New England (24)

Chuck Noll - Pittsburgh (23)

Steve Owen - N.Y. Giants (23)

MATTHEW SLATER BEGINS 16th CONSECUTIVE SEASON

Matthew Slater is entering his 16th consecutive NFL season, tied with Steve Grogan for the second-most seasons with the Patriots, behind the 20 by Tom Brady.

MOST CONSECUTIVE SEASONS WITH NEW ENGLAND

Player Seasons

Tom Brady - 20

Matthew Slater - 16

Steve Grogan - 16

Troy Brown - 15

Julius Adams - 15

MAC JONES THROWS FOR AT LEAST TWO TOUCHDOWNS IN FOURTH STRAIGHT GAME

QB Mac Jones threw for three total touchdowns with a 9-yard touchdown pass to TE Hunter Henry and a 19-yard touchdown pass to WR Kendrick Bourne in the second quarter and a 11-yard touchdown pass to Bourne in fourth quarter. Jones has now thrown for at least two touchdowns in four straight games, after closing out the 2022 season with at least two touchdowns in the final three games of the year.

JONES SETS CAREER HIGHS IN COMPLETIONS AND ATTEMPTS

Jones set career highs with 35 completions on 54 attempts. His previous high in completions was 31 vs. Tampa Bay on Oct. 3, 2021 and his previous best in attempts was 51 vs. New Orleans on Sept. 26, 2021. It is the second time he has at least 50 attempts in a game and the third time he has had at least 30 completions in a game.

JONES THROWS FOR THREE TOUCHDOWNS FOR FOURTH TIME

Jones threw three touchdowns in a game for the fourth time in his career. He had three touchdowns at Buffalo on Jan. 8, 2023, vs. Jacksonville on Jan. 2, 2022, vs. Cleveland on Nov. 4, 2021.

JONES HAS FIFTH CAREER 300-YARD GAME

Jones finished with 316 yards passing. It is his fifth career 300-yard game. In 2022, he had two 300-yard games, including a career-high 382 yards passing.

KENDRICK BOURNE TIES CAREER-HIGH WITH THIRD TWO-TOUCHDOWN GAME

WR Kendrick Bourne caught two touchdown passes from QB Mac Jones with a 19-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter and an 11-yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter. It marks his third two-touchdown game and second as a member of the Patriots. He also had two touchdowns vs. Tennessee on Nov. 28, 2021. Bourne's first career two-touchdown game was on Dec. 8, 2019 at New Orleans when he played for San Francisco.

GONZALEZ GETS CREDIT FOR FIRST CAREER SACK; HAS KEY PASS BREAKUP IN FOURTH QUARTER

First-round draft pick DB Christian Gonzalez sacked QB Jalen Hurts for an 8-yard loss in the fourth quarter for his first career NFL sack. Later in the fourth quarter, he broke up a Philadelphia pass on a fourth-and-two situation with 1:57 left to play.

RHAMONDRE STEVENSON SHOWS UP IN THE PASSING GAME

Rhamondre Stevenson finished with 6 receptions for 64 yards. It is the third time in his career he has had at least 60 receiving yards in a game. He had career-high 76 yards receiving at Minnesota on Nov. 24, 2022 and 72 receiving yards at N.Y. Jets on Oct. 30, 2022. Last year, Stevenson led the Patriots with a team-high 69 receptions.

TY MONTOMERY II HAS SECOND-LONGEST KICKOFF RETURN OF HIS CAREER;

THIRD 40-YARD RETURN OF HIS CAREER

RB Ty Montgomery II returned a second quarter kickoff 43 yards. It marked his third career kickoff of at least 40 yards and the second longest kickoff return of his career. He had a career-long 46-yard return on Sept. 13, 2015 at Chicago and a 40-yard return vs. Dallas on Oct. 16, 2016 while he played for Green Bay.

JUDON AND UCHE RECORD FIRST SACKS THE SEASON

LB Matthew Judon and LB Josh Uche each recorded first quarter sacks against Philadelphia. In 2022, Judon (15 ½) and Uche (11 ½) both reached double digit sack totals. It was the fourth time in team history that the Patriots had two players reach at double digit sack totals.

RB EZEKIEL ELLIOTT MAKES DEBUT IN A NEW ENGLAND UNIFORM

RB Ezekeil Elliott's first play as a member of the Patriots resulted in an 11-yard run in the first quarter.

MIKE GESICKI'S FIRST RECEPTION GOES FOR A FIRST DOWN

TE Mike Gesicki made his debut in a New England uniform against Philadelphia after missing the entire preseason due to injury. His first reception was a 9-yard gain for a first down to convert on a third-and-six situation in the second quarter.

BARINGER PUNT GOES FOR 65

Rookie P Bryce Baringer had a 65-yard punt in the third quarter. He had four 60-yard punts in the preseason, including a 69-yard punt at Tennessee on Aug. 25.

LINEUP NOTES

  • RB Ty Montgomery lined up to return kicks. He returned one kick for 28 yards in the 2022 season-opener for the Patriots at Miami on Sept. 11 in the only game he played last season.
  • OL Calvin Anderson made his debut in a New England uniform with a start at right tackle. Anderson was originally signed by New England as a rookie free agent out Texas, was released prior to training camp and spent time with the Jets and Broncos before coming back to the Patriots. He missed the entire 2023 preseason while on the PUP List.
  • TE Mike Gesicki was in the starting lineup in a two-tight end set.

NEW FACES

Of the 19 new players on the 2023 53-man roster, 18 saw action in their first regular season game as a member of the Patriots.

2023 draft picks – CB Christian Gonzalez, DL Keion White, LB Marte Mapu, C Jake Andrews, K Chad Ryland, OL Sidy Sow, OL Atonio Mafi, WR Kayshon Boutte, P Bryce Baringer, WR Demario Douglas and CB Ameer Speed.

Veteran free agents – OL Calvin Anderson, LB Chris Board, TE Pharaoh Brown, RB Ezekiel Elliott, TE Mike Gesicki, WR JuJu Smith-Schuster and OL Tyrone Wheatley Jr. OL Vederian Lowe dressed for the game but did not play.

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