Jeremy Brevard/USA Today Sports

Bill Belichick not pleased with performance vs. Panthers: 'We weren’t able to accomplish much'

Ryan Hannable
August 25, 2018 - 12:11 am

CHARLOTTE -- The third preseason game is called the "dress rehearsal" for the regular season and for the Patriots, they better hope it goes a lot different.

The Patriots did not play all that well in their 25-14 loss to the Panthers Friday night in Carolina -- although it's worth noting it was only 9-3 when the starters left the game at the half.

“The Panthers obviously did a good job tonight,” Bill Belichick said. “Coach [Ron] Rivera, his staff, their team played well in all three phases of the game and outplayed us across the board for four quarters. So we’ve got a lot of work to do. There really wasn’t any part of the game that was very competitive. So we’ll just have to go back to work and see if we can find a way to do a few things better than we did them tonight. That’s really about all there is to say. They just did a good job.” 

Carolina out-gained the Patriots 333-271 and averaged 5.2 yards per play compared to the Patriots' 4.4 yards per play. New England also allowed the Panthers to go 8-for-15 on third down, and only converted 5-of-14 of its own third-down attempts.

"I think we all would like to play better," Tom Brady said. "I think any time you go on the road and play a good team you've got to make the plays. I think tonight's a great example when you don't and they do. We didn't do much in the first quarter and got behind. Then you fight uphill all night against a good team and its tough to win. So hopefully we can take something from it and get back to work and see if we can do a better job next time."

Typically, the starters do not play at all in the fourth and final preseason game, but maybe because of the way they played Friday they could be given a series or two to feel better about themselves going into Week 1.

"We just have to go back to work," Belichick said. "Obviously have a lot of work to do. We weren't able to accomplish much tonight. Didn't play well in any three phases of the game. Just have to go back to work and do a better job than that."

The Patriots close out the preseason next Thursday night against the Giants.

Related: Why was Jason McCourty playing safety?