Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 8/22/13
8 a.m. ET: The Patriots’ rookie wide receivers will get plenty of time to work with Tom Brady against the Lions. Brady will likely play into the third quarter, since this marks the all-important third preseason game. Danny Amendola will likely miss the game due to injury after being out in Monday and Tuesday’s practices with an undisclosed injury. That will give plenty of time for rookies Josh Boyce, Aaron Dobson and Kenbrell Thompkins to continue to get acquainted with Brady. Julian Edelman will also see plenty of snaps with Brady due to Amendola’s injury. Edelman has played just four snaps with Brady so far this preseason. Other than Amendola, Rob Gronkowski (PUP), Mark Harrison (non-football injury), Armond Armstead (non-football illness), Brandon Jones and Jermaine Cunningham were not spotted at Tuesday’s practice and will likely not play. Ras-I Dowling, Alfonzo Dennard, Marcus Cannon, Daniel Fells, Justin Francis and Kamar Aiken were off on the side field working with trainers, so they likely won’t suit up for tonight’s game either. Devin McCourty, Dan Connolly and Markus Zusevics have yet to suit up for a preseason game, and all three players are expected to be out on the field Thursday night. Connolly will get a jump on Cannon for the starting role at right guard by getting into a preseason game sooner. It will be interesting to watch the Patriots’ safeties with McCourty back in the lineup. His communication with Adrian Wilson will be key this season. Steve Gregory will also likely be mixed into the starting unit. With Dennard and Dowling out again, Logan Ryan will continue to get plenty of looks at cornerback — both in the slot and outside. Kyle Arrington was praising Ryan for how quickly he’s picked up the nuances of the defense in his short time in Foxboro. Arrington will likely start across from Aqib Talib. Here are our projected starters for the Patriots: OFFENSE QB: Brady RB: Stevan Ridley WR: Thompkins, Boyce TE: Zach Sudfeld, Jake Ballard OL: Nate Solder, Logan Mankins, Ryan Wendell, Connolly, Sebastian Vollmer DEFENSE DE: Chandler Jones, Rob Ninkovich DT: Vince Wilfork, Tommy Kelly LB: Jerod Mayo, Brandon Spikes, Dont’a Hightower CB: Talib, Arrington SAF: McCourty, Wilson We’ll keep you updated on all the latest news of the day. The game will kick off at 7:30 p.m. Have a question for Doug Kyed? Send it to him via Twitter at @DougKyedNESN or send it here. Filed under: Doug Kyed, Headlines, Live Blog, New England Patriots

This article first appeared on NESN.com and was syndicated with permission.

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