Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 8/13/13
Without a top-tier prototypical “X” receiver on the roster, going up against Vincent Jackson for three days can only help improve the Patriots’ defensive backs. The 6-foot-5, 230-pound receiver may make the Patriots’ secondary look foolish at times, but it’s good practice for bigger, more physical receivers the team will have to face during the season. The ball was thrown Jackson’s way 13 times during Tuesday’s practice, and Patriots’ defensive backs only “beat” Jackson three times. Kyle Arrington beat Jackson once during one-on-ones, while Jackson beat Devin McCourty and Arrington in later reps. Steve Gregory picked off Josh Freeman on a throw intended for Jackson in 11-on-11s. Justin Green also got the better of Jackson on one rep. The rest of the time, Jackson was beating guys like Arrington and Aqib Talib. Talib appreciated the practice, though. “That’s good work man, leading into the season,” Talib said. “One week you get DeSean Jackson, change up the look you get V-Jack, Young Mike [Williams]. Man, it’s definitely good practice.” Talib got beat by DeSean Jackson on a 47-yard touchdown pass in the Patriots’ first preseason game of the year against Philadelphia. Talib’s results were reportedly mixed against Jackson in the three joint practices held in Philly. Rookie safety Duron Harmon also appreciates going up two of the top receivers in the league, who use different strengths to get open and succeed in the NFL. “It’s been exciting,” Harmon said. “Anytime you get to go against guys of that stature. It’s very very exciting. Because you get to measure yourself and get to see how you react in a situation where they’re getting the ball.” Harmon held his own against Vincent Jackson in practice Tuesday, helping out his corners over the top. The Patriots’ defensive backs have mostly been going up against rookies this training camp. Aaron Dobson, Josh Boyce, Kenbrell Thompkins and Quentin Sims have received the bulk of the snaps across from Danny Amendola in the offense. Going up against players like the Jacksons, Riley Cooper and Williams, as well as seeing different offenses, is valuable to the Patriots’ secondary. “You want to see a different offense, different receivers, different speed, different size, because that’s what you’re going to see throughout the whole season,” Talib said. “It’s definitely good work.” Bill Belichick has had his team participate in two weeks of joint practices each of the last two years. He sees a lot of value in seeing new looks in practice against other teams. “I think it’s a good way to prepare our team,” Belichick said. “We’ve seen ourselves, we’ve seen Philadelphia and now we’ll see Tampa. Our players will get a lot of exposure and I think those things will serve us well at some point down the road. We’re going to get them eventually.” The Patriots have two more joint practices against Tampa Bay, then training camp is over. The Patriots will continue to practice amongst themselves without fans in attendance. Have a question for Doug Kyed? Send it to him via Twitter at @DougKyedNESN or send it here. Filed under: Doug Kyed, New England Patriots, Top Stories
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Crisco landed $3.45 million worth of free advertising from NFC title game

Blake Bortles wants to stay with Jaguars

Bucks fire coach Jason Kidd

Report: Kawhi Leonard’s injury rehab causing strained relationship with Spurs

A.J. Bouye throws Jaguars coaching staff under the bus

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Keenum not committed to re-signing with Vikings in 2018

Giants announce Pat Shurmur as head coach

Report: Steelers won't do long-term deal with Le'Veon Bell until after using franchise tag

X-rays come back negative on Nick Foles' ribs

Redskins to franchise tag Kirk Cousins for third straight year?

Garoppolo getting nice payday from Patriots’ playoff run

The 'More things change...' quiz

Position-by-position breakdown of Super Bowl LII teams

How the New England Patriots arrived at Super Bowl LII

Behind the scenes: History of the Super Bowl in pictures

Oldest players to ever be on Super Bowl rosters

Players with the most Super Bowl appearances

Top takeaways from NFL Championship Sunday

Six incredible stats from the Belichick/Brady era in Boston

Sports & Politics Intersect: Nassar's victims put USA Gymnastics, MSU on trial

The 'One of these things is not like the other' quiz

Top 25 times franchise players have changed scenes in MLB

The best college hoops games to watch down the stretch

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Position-by-position breakdown of Super Bowl LII teams

Oldest players to ever be on Super Bowl rosters

The 'More things change...' quiz

How the New England Patriots arrived at Super Bowl LII

Players with the most Super Bowl appearances

Behind the scenes: History of the Super Bowl in pictures

Sports & Politics Intersect: Nassar's victims put USA Gymnastics, MSU on trial

Top 25 times franchise players have changed scenes in MLB

The 'One of these things is not like the other' quiz

The best college hoops games to watch down the stretch

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker