TAMPA -- At initial glance, a look at three players whose performance was "up" and three players whose performance was at the opposite end of the spectrum in the Patriots' preseason loss to the Buccaneers:
Marquice Cole -- Slot cornerback shows up with a couple of pass breakups and also appears on two of the "Big 4" units on special teams, making his case for a roster spot.
Stevan Ridley -- Running back positions himself for lead duties, totaling 16 carries for 87 yards while showcasing a hard-charging style. While he missed one blitz pickup, he made up for the miscue with his strong running.
Brandon Spikes -- With extensive playing time at middle linebacker, he is a force against the run, proving once again that when he is on the field the defense seems to play with an added spark.
Marcus Cannon -- Right tackle whiffs on a speed rush as Michael Bennett blazes past him to strip-sack quarterback Tom Brady in the first quarter. Perhaps Brady could have got rid of the ball quicker, but Cannon did him no favors.
Kickoff coverage unit -- Continues to be an issue for the team this preseason, as the tone for the night is set when the Buccaneers take the opening kickoff back 39 yards.