Patriots

Patriots

FOXBORO -- The Patriots have a handful of positional battles that have been ongoing during training camp, but most are concerning the bottom of positional depth charts.

One of the few that appears as though it will determine a Week 1 starter is at center, where David Andrews and Bryan Stork have been splittling reps with what appears to be the first offensive line group. 

Andrews was the starter for New England's first preseason game against the Saints, and he played in 23 first-half snaps. Stork also mixed in with the offensive line unit anchored by left tackle Nate Solder, playing 16 snaps. 

While the split was more evenly-spread during the early portion of camp, Stork suffered a reported head injury and missed a week of camp practice, giving Andrews an opportunity to get more work.

Andrews started 11 games last season as an undrafted rookie, including the first 10 of the season until Stork was activated off of the short-term injured reserve list. 

When asked about Andrews' progression in his second year, Patriots coach Bill Belichick said that the University of Georgia product has made significant strides after having a full offseason in the program.

"A lot more experience and confidence and quicker reactions and calls on the line of scrimmage than he did last year," Belichick said. "Not that it was bad last year. It was good. It was really good for a rookie. It's even better this year.

"Just has more experience and, as I said, more confidence. Can do some things with the cadence. He does a real good job with that as well. There's a lot of things he's added to his game. You know -- little things. But those add up. He's done a good job."

 

Whether he's done well enough to overtake Stork and earn the starter's role remains to be seen. But it appears as though he hasn't done much to hurt his chances.