Rookies changed the game

In a piece now posted on ESPNBoston.com, Mike Reiss writes on Patriots rookies Chandler Jones and Dont'a Hightower and how they teamed up for the play of the game in the team's season-opening win.

New England Patriots defensive end Chandler Jones was making his first career NFL regular-season start. For Tennessee Titans left tackle Michael Roos, it was career regular-season start No. 113.

In the battle of youth versus experience, score one for the kid.

There were many positives for the visiting Patriots in their convincing 34-13 season-opening victory over the Titans at LP Field, but Jones' second-quarter strip sack of quarterback Jake Locker that was returned six yards for a touchdown by fellow rookie Dont'a Hightower topped the charts.

The play changed the game. It also served notice that after years of searching for more difference-makers on defense, Pats coach Bill Belichick might have finally struck gold this year -- not once, but twice.

To read the piece, CLICK HERE.