- Mike Reiss, ESPN Staff Writer
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FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- With the Patriots in full pads for the fourth straight practice, it was another chance to watch the team's defensive line work on its pass rush against the club's offensive linemen.
Here was what we saw:
DE Marcus Benard -- One rush stands out; he lines up over the outside shoulder of guard Chris McDonald (3 technique), which is different for a 6-foot-2, 260-pound end, and proves too quick at the snap as he surges through using a swim move. In addition, Benard's first rep while aligned on a wide split at defensive end features high-impact contact with right tackle Sebastian Vollmer, as Vollmer gets his hands on Benard but Benard attempts to spin free to the inside. A real good matchup, with Benard's explosion and Vollmer's power meeting head-on. Benard continues to get after it, later beating Kevin Haslam, and also looping around fellow end Jason Vega in 2-on-2 combination work to apply some pressure.
G Tyronne Green --Five-year veteran holds his ground against defensive tackle Tommy Kelly and later works together with right tackle Sebastian Vollmer in 2-on-2 combination drills to keep Kelly and Rob Ninkovich at bay.
Showing up on the radar
DE Jake Bequette -- Shows spark with two strong rushes: one against left tackle Nate Solder in 1-on-1s, and then another when he combines with Justin Francis to loop inside for a pressure in 2-on-2s (vs. R.J. Mattes and Will Svitek). With Jermaine Cunningham not taking reps (he was having his knee/leg looked at earlier in practice), Bequette seems to step up his game.
DT Joe Vellano -- Working against right guard Markus Zusevics, his quick move to the inside shoulder helps him surge free with little resistance in 2-on-2s. Earlier, Zusevics digs in to impede Vellano in what looked like a draw.
C Ryan Wendell -- Stands up Vellano as forward progress is stopped with authority.
Veterans show rookies how it's done
LT Nate Solder/G Logan Mankins vs. DE Michael Buchanan/DT Marcus Forston -- In 2-on-2s, Solder locks out Buchanan and Mankins handles Forston as the pocket is kept clean. The Solder/Mankins combo also has a nice rep against Vince Wilfork/Chandler Jones, and if you heard a loud thud around 4:15 p.m. ET in the Foxborough area yesterday, it might have been from that big-time collision.
Defenders jumping too early
DE Rob Ninkovich, DT Tommy Kelly, DE Jason Vega, DT Marcus Forston and DE Jake Bequette -- All five take penalty laps for encroachment, something that defensive line coach Patrick Graham figures to address in follow-up meetings. Can't have that type of undisciplined play.
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