Phillip Dorsett played well, but knows he can be better

"Obviously we left a lot of plays on the field."

Phillip Dorsett
New England Patriots wide receiver Phillip Dorsett eludes Houston Texans cornerback Kevin Johnson. –AP Photo/Steven Senne

FOXBOROUGH — On Sunday, Phillip Dorsett caught everything.

He snared passes that were intended for him, and one that wasn’t. He made catches in the flat, over the middle, and in the end zone. All told, Dorsett had seven receptions on as many targets, accumulating 66 yards and scoring for the first time since December of 2016.

On Monday, Dorsett was just another intellectually fatigued Patriots player, having been knocked down a few pegs after hours spent in the film room.

“We just finished looking at [the film], actually,’’ Dorsett said. “Obviously we left a lot of plays on the field. We did execute well on some instances.


“We know, being here, that everything is going to get critiqued. Not necessarily in a bad way, but everything’s going to get coached. There’s always good and bad on the tape.’’

Dorsett’s individual performance in the Patriots’ 27-20 win over Houston was far more impressive than he let on.

The 25-year old needs only five catches to match his total from 2017. He was on the field for 76 percent of New England’s offensive plays (57 snaps) and ran 37 routes, more than in any game last season.

Dorsett even provided a few highlights as icing on the cake.

Late in the second quarter, he nabbed three passes from Tom Brady in the span of four plays, establishing himself as a trustworthy option amid a thinned New England receiving corps.

One pass was intended for receiver Chris Hogan, but ended up being poached by Dorsett in an impressive display of leaping ability. Another resulted in 6 points, a 4-yard strike to Dorsett in the back of the end zone after Brady’s first few reads fell by the wayside.

“We got the coverage that we were practicing the whole week,’’ said Dorsett. “We had a clue of what they were going to play on it. We just made the right play, Tom made the right read. He’s a smart quarterback. He’s seen it all. He was able to adjust.’’


Early in the fourth quarter, Dorsett tied a ribbon on his successful opener by dusting Houston cornerback Kevin Johnson with a fearsome juke down the right sideline.

An even tougher task looms as the Patriots prepare for a date with the Jaguars in Jacksonville at 4:25 p.m. on Sunday. Dorsett will prepare forJaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey the way he knows best — by looking at the tape.

“He’s the prototypical corner,’’ said Dorsett. “I remember [Matthew] Slater said last year, ‘If you want a corner — the height, the size, the speed, his range, trash-talking — that’s how you want him to be.’

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“I expect a tough game, like it was last year. We all know what they’re capable of. I can’t wait to dial in on them.’’