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Quick-hit thoughts after 1st quarter

TAMPA -- Quick-hit thoughts after the first quarter of the Patriots' preseason game against the Buccaneers, with the Patriots leading 21-0:

1. Strong effort all around. The Patriots are playing with great pace on offense and are attacking on defense.

2. The much-anticipated Tom Brady-to-Chad Ochocinco connection got some early work, with Brady looking his way often. Ochocinco took a hard hit over the middle on the first attempt, an incompletion, drawing a personal foul penalty on Buccaneers linebacker Mason Foster. A sideline connection was also incomplete before Ochocinco's first reception, an 8-yard touchdown, which came out of a three-TE set off play-action. There was no over-the-top reaction from Ochocinco after the score. He just put the football down and teammates, including Brady, came over to congratulate him.

3. When it's third-and-31, that's usually a good thing for the defense. The Patriots are swarming tonight, with a nice mix of solid coverage and pressure. It's coming from all over -- with Andre Carter off the edge and Jerod Mayo up the middle showing up with pressures.

4. A lot of two- and three-TE sets. Rookie free agent Will Yeatman is getting playing time over fifth-round pick Lee Smith. Yeatman had a nice wham block on BenJarvus Green-Ellis' 16-yard run to set up a touchdown.

5. Bill Belichick is always coaching. On the second play of the team's third drive of the game, Belichick told Brian Hoyer to enter the game. Hoyer was on for two snaps, before Brady came back on. Belichick has done that in the past as a reminder to his No. 2 QB to be ready at a moment's notice.

6. On the injury front, keep an eye on linebacker Dane Fletcher. He started, played the first two plays of the game, but hasn't been on the field since. He also isn't spotted on the sidelines. Gary Guyton has taken his place.

7. Good kickoffs from Chris Koepplin, with three touchbacks on his first four attempts.

8. Brandon Meriweather came out of the game at safety on the third series, replaced by Sergio Brown. A message from the coaching staff perhaps. Meriweather also played with Brown, as Patrick Chung came out.