Patriots 20, Panthers 10: Mac Jones, Offense Overcome Sluggish Start

Patriots 20, Panthers 10: Mac Jones, Offense Overcome Sluggish Start

Published August 20, 2022
Views 16

Quarterback Mac Jones shrugged off a slow start and hit receiver Nelson Agholor with a beautiful 45-yard pass to set up Ty Montgomery’s second-quarter touchdown and help the Pats beat the Carolina Panthers, 20-10, at Gillette Stadium.

The Patriots and Panthers engaged in several fights over two days of joint practices in Foxboro this week, resulting in players being kicked out, a receiver suffering a concussion and interceptions being comically punctuated with punting celebrations toward the other team’s sideline. Friday’s game, however, featured clean, but mostly bland football.

The only noteworthy penalties were garden-variety, late-hit personal fouls by New England’s Christian Barmore and James Ferentz, and a bizarre celebration penalty on the Panthers when even players in street clothes left the sideline for the end zone after their lone (defensive) touchdown.

Despite playing against a Panthers’ junior-varsity squad void of quarterbacks Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold and instead featuring backups P.J. Walker and rookie Matt Corral, the Patriots were sluggish out of the gate. But Jones briefly came alive and the Patriots’ defense – as expected – dominated in forcing three turnovers (including a fumble recovery by Myles Bryant and an interception by Shaun Wade) and holding the Panthers’ offense out of the end zone.