The joint practice between the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles didn’t go as smoothly as the former may have hoped.
By most accounts, the Eagles got the better of the session, and specifically, Patriots tight end might have been injured on after taking a hard hit from the Eagles’ Derek Barnett.
The Boston Herald’s Andrew Callahan thinks LaCosse may have lost consciousness momentarily after the hit that many described as thudding.
Pro Football Report’s Bob Grotz also believes LaCosse was knocked out from the hit.
CLNS’ Evan Lazar felt the hit might have be a bit too much for a practice session.
Piggybacking on Callahan’s “hospital ball” reference, Boston Sports Journal’s Greg Bedard pointed the finger at Cam Newton, who threw the pass, as he called the throw a “buddy pass,” implying it put LaCosse in a vulnerable position.
Without seeing the play or understanding what was called and the route that was run, it is impossible to say exactly who, or if anyone was at fault. However, Newton was asked about the play during his session with the media after the joint practice.
Cam Newton Talked About the Pass That Led to LaCosse’s Injury
When Newton was asked about the throw, there was some obvious regret.
“Well, those throws, you gotta just go back and look at em,” Newton said in response to the question about the play when LaCosse was injured. “No one wants to see their teammate get carted off, or lying down on the ground after a play. By no means did I intend to have any kind of disaster on that play.”
The immediate concern is for LaCosse’s well being. The obvious hope is that he is OK, but if LaCosse does miss time, it could create a depth issue at tight end.
The Patriots’ Tight End Depth Could Be Tested
Prized free-agent acquisition Hunter Henry has already missed time with a shoulder injury. The Patriots had planned to run a lot of two tight end sets with Henry and another free-agent acquisition, Jonnu Smith.
We don’t know how many tight ends the Patriots will keep on the roster, but with second-year pro Devin Asiasi missing time during training camp due to COVID-19, and now a potential injury to LaCosse, there could be a depth issue. Even Smith has battled injuries throughout training camp.
When you consider how heavily Newton and even Mac Jones is expected to lean on the tight ends, this is concerning. Last season, the Patriots’ tight end group was arguably the worst in the NFL. Ryan Izzo was the best at the position with Asiasi struggling to get on the field, and the recently released Dalton Keene experiencing some of the same problems.
With the Patriots offense set to lean heavily on the run game with short, precision passes, this could be a developing story throughout the preseason and even into Week 1. Stay tuned.
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