NFL.com breaks down what you need to know from Week 1 of the 2022 NFL preseason. Catch up on each game's biggest takeaways using the links below:
- Dimes' and Daboll's first collaboration. Delivered with the usual preamble that only so much can be predicted and judged by preseason play, quarterback Daniel Jones' first live action in Brian Daboll's offense was decent, if not promising. Facing a Patriots defense that was getting after him, Jones and the Giants went 10 plays on the opening drive that added up to three points. Jones was 3 of 6 for 42 yards and converted two of three third downs -- one via his legs and another through the air -- on the drive. It was hardly earth-shattering, but it was favorable. Unfortunately for Jones, backup Tyrod Taylor looked better, as he went 13-for-21 passing for 129 yards and a score -- though it wasn't against the same opposition entirely. Jones ended the evening 6 of 10 for 69 yards with zero touchdowns or interceptions, and he most importantly survived. The most problematic aspect for Big Blue proved to be its offensive line play, as Jones was sacked once and hit hard at least three times.
- Pats rookie WR offers reason for optimism. When the Patriots traded up to select speedster Tyquan Thornton in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft, the pick was met with raised eyebrows. Thornton's preseason debut Thursday offered optimism that he'll raise some eyebrows in a more positive sense going forward. Showing his big-play potential, Thornton got separation on a second-drive play, but QB Brian Hoyer's throw was short and led to a pass breakup (the play was nullified on an illegal contact call). Eight plays later, Thornton (two catches for nine yards on two targets) worked through traffic against Giants starting cornerback Aaron Robinson for a 2-yard touchdown catch. The rookie out of Baylor could offer some long-absent excitement to the Pats WRs corps.
- Plenty of good and bad in Willis' initial showing. The first glimpse of Malik Willis was hardly a good one, but the rookie quarterback out of Liberty rebounded from an 0-for-3 start to turn in a showing that offered plenty of promise balanced with room for improvement. His first play saw him roll right and hurriedly sling a bad ball through the grasp of fullback Tory Carter. As evidenced, his timing, pocket awareness and touch will need to develop. But his athleticism, arm strength and overall potential were also there for the viewing, highlighted by a 7-yard touchdown run in which he ran through a tackle by Ravens first-round safety Kyle Hamilton en route to six points. Willis' first NFL action extended briefly into the third quarter and he finished the night 6 of 11 for 107 yards with zero touchdowns and zero interceptions. His ability to make plays with his legs offered the most delight, as he racked up 38 yards on five carries. There's a long road ahead for Willis, but there was ample reason for hopefulness on display Thursday.
- Ravens have a special rookie. With all the pomp and circumstance that accompanied Matt Araiza into the draft process, it was surprising to some when the Ravens used a fourth-round pick to make Jordan Stout the first punter taken in the 2022 NFL Draft. Stout's showing Thursday was an example of just why a club known for its special teams prowess pounced on Stout. He was booming punts and kickoffs throughout the Ravens' NFL-record 21st straight preseason win. Stout's final punting line saw an average of 47.8 yards on four punts with one coming to rest inside the 20. The long-locked, scruffy-bearded Penn State product is going to tilt the field in the Ravens' favor plenty of times to come.
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