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What to watch for: Patriots-Panthers

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It's the moment we've all been waiting for -- Week 3 of the NFL preseason. We'll see more established stars and potential starters than any other week of the preseason. Around The NFL's Conor Orr dissects what you can expect to see from the 16 games this weekend.

Here's what to what to watch for ...

PATRIOTS at PANTHERS, 7:30 p.m.

» While it is foolish to try and project when and where we will see Tom Brady next, the Patriots quarterback discussed with reporters this week that he has not been told he won't be taking snaps against the Panthers. As we've said before, this preseason was always about Jimmy Garoppolo, but even the NFL's best quarterback would like to take some game snaps before a four-week hiatus.

» We have been subjected to a non-stop barrage of Devin Funchess hype this offseason and, according to reporters on the ground in Carolina, the hype is warranted. The Panthers will take that over a Terrelle Pryor preseason that could eventually go nowhere, but Funchess is currently 177th among wide receivers in the preseason with three grabs for 29 yards and a touchdown. Here's hoping the robust dress rehearsal doubles that total.

» Bill Belichick downplayed the importance of the third preseason game significantly in an interview this week. It will be interesting to see if he decides to handle his starting lineup any differently than the norm this year given his situation at quarterback and offensive line.

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