Quick-hit thoughts from 3rd quarter

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Passing along observations from the third quarter of the Patriots preseason game against the Giants, which is tied at 3-3.

1. Koutouvides injured. Linebacker Niko Koutouvides, an integral special teams player who adds depth on defense, left the game with what appeared to be a right arm issue. He was taken by members of the Patriots medical staff to the locker room, but eventually returned to the sidelines.

2. Cunningham continues big night. Jermaine Cunningham continued his strong effort, which included two first half sacks, with a forced holding on a near-sack of Giants quarterback David Carr. Cunningham has been a difficult assignment for the Giants offensive line throughout the night, and is making a case to be a factor in the Patriots' pass rush this season.

3. Hoyer enters game. Brian Hoyer entered the game with 7:27 remaining in the quarter, taking over for Ryan Mallet. He's 2/2 for 8 yards thus far.

4. Ebner flies down field, draws foul. Safety Nate Ebner flexed some of the special teams muscle he's been billed to possess, flying down the field on a punt, and eventually drawing a block in the back penalty. It's not hard to take notice of him, as he finds his way around the ball with notable regularity.

5. Penalty box. Defensive lineman Marcus Harrison was called for an offsides penalty.