On Tuesday afternoon the New England Patriots and New Orleans Saints came together for a joint practice at the Patriots practice facility. In front of an estimated 17,000 fans, the two teams faced an opposing team for the first time since last season. For the Patriots facing another opponent couldn’t have come at a better time.
Much has been made this last week about the team chemistry of the Patriots. The team has had several fights including one that involved nearly the whole team ending with head coach Bill Belichick ordering the team to run laps. Fights are a part of training camp when you have several players fighting for jobs but some would argue it was starting to get a little out of hand.
With the Saints joining in now, the whole Patriots team is now on the same side. While this joint practice was scheduled several weeks before these recent dustups, this has come at a great time as the team can stop fighting with each other and fight with one another against a common opponent.
It wasn’t the cleanest practice for the Patriots. Belichick showed up 51 minutes after the practice started after attending the funeral of Philadelphia Eagles coach Andy Reid’s son who died this week. As for the practice itself, the Saints seemed to be in much better shape running over the Patriots still questionable defense. The Patriots offense, expected to be the NFL’s best in 2012, was off with many misconnections.
Though the play at practice may have not gone as smoothly as the team might have hoped, the chemistry created during the practice should help the team in the coming weeks. With the continuing fights in practice, this day should help unite the team. That should continue as preseason begins Thursday night at Gillette Stadium against these same New Orleans Saints.