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Ryan Mallett shows improvements against Eagles

Posted by Leonard Neslin  August 21, 2012 12:03 AM

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Patriots quarterback Ryan Mallett made strides in his second preseason game, and he did it against a more fierce pass rush from the Eagles than the Saints generated in the first outing.

With Tom Brady, along with 25 others, inactive, Mallett was the Patriots' leader Monday in a 27-17 loss to the Eagles.

He completed 10 of his 20 attempts, including a 7-yard touchdown pass to tight end Alex Silvestro in the beginning of the second quarter. He also didn't lose any throws to the other team, as he did against the Saints.

"It's been like 10 days, so it's good to get out there and play again," Mallett said.

Patriots coach Bill Belichick said Mallett and backup quarterback Brian Hoyer played equally, and that starting Mallett was not just a chance to see him against a top defense.

"I think they probably played against the same players and with the same players," he said.

Hoyer, who completed 5 of 17 passes for 55 yards, was disappointed in the number of incomplete passes.

"When you are starting a drive you want to hit a few more completions," Hoyer said. "I thought I gave my guys a chance to make a play. It's something we'll learn from; we haven't seen a lot of man coverage."

News, analysis and commentary from Boston.com's staff writers and contributors, including Zuri Berry and Erik Frenz.

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