New England Patriots: 6 July Thoughts

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Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

It’s almost guaranteed that Dan Connolly will retire this summer, so that opens the door for rookie Tre’ Jackson to start at left guard. Jackson will line-up next to fellow Florida State product Bryan Stork, giving the Patriots some added chemistry on the offensive line. Jordan Devey is the only roadblock standing in the way between Jackson and the starting job in Week 1.

Over at right guard, things are a bit more up in the air. The question on the Patriots’ offensive line is at right guard, where undersized Ryan Wendell is currently listed as the starter. But that will likely change.

Sophomore pro Cameron Fleming is in the midst of a transition from tackle to guard, so he has to be considered a leading candidate to be the Week 1 starter. Fleming is one of the smartest players on the Patriots’ roster having earned a double major in aeronautics and astronautics from Stanford.

Musket Fire’s Hal Bent wrote today that Josh Kline could be a surprise starter at either right or left guard. Kline developed into the Patriots’ top sixth man on the offensive line last year, racking up nearly 300 snaps in the regular season and maintaining a regular role in the playoffs.

Next: 2. A Pair of Inexperienced TEs Vying for the Roster