New England Patriots

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady will make his preseason debut tonight when the Patriots play host to the Philadelphia Eagles at Gillette Stadium. And according to The Athletic’s Jeff Howe, it’ll be more than your average one-and-done for the 41-year-old face of the franchise, as Brady is instead expected to play almost all of the first half.

Brady’s seemingly heavy workload for just the second preseason of the Patriots’ four-game slate comes with Brady needing to know what the Patriots have with their seemingly thin wide receiver corps, and with chemistry of the utmost importance just three weeks away from the team’s season-opening head-to-head with the Houston Texans.

“They’re important,” Brady said on Tuesday when talking about his preseason reps. “It’s good work. I said earlier, it’s always – whether it’s walk-through, practice, game, it all matters because I think if it was a waste of time, we wouldn’t do it. I think there’s a lot of urgency and you know we’re not where we need to be, got a lot of work to do and these practices are a part of it, the opportunities that we get in the game.”

With a full half to assess Brady’s game, the biggest thing to watch will indeed be Brady’s chemistry with his new receivers, and whether or not talents such as veteran wideout Eric Decker and tight end Jacob Hollister can take advantage of the potentially big role they can have on the 2018 Patriots roster should they be on the same page as Brady.

“When everything’s full live, quarterbacks getting hit, that provides a little different element,” said Brady. “So it’s good to get out there and it’s good to be out here practicing and we got to try to see if we can put together a great performance.”

Brady is coming off the third MVP season of his NFL career, with 4,577 yards and 32 touchdowns last season.