Every week before the game, I'll be selecting one player to keep an especially close eye on. This week, it's cornerback Chris Owens.
Opportunity isn't just knocking on Chris Owens' door. It's hiding in the bushes, sending love letters and playing love songs on a boombox outside his window. This is a big moment for Owens.
I'm referring to the plight of one Brent "Air" Grimes, who is suffering through a groin injury at the moment and may not play tonight. It's unfortunate, but we know Grimes is good enough to at least lock up a nickel role with this team. What we may find out tonight is whether Owens can lock up a starting job.
He's got zero competition playing tonight, and he'll have every opportunity to match up with the Patriots best receivers for a short time. If Grimes doesn't play, Chevis Jackson and Dominique Franks will take time at his spot, and we already know Dunta Robinson is out. If ever there was a chance to capitalize, Owens is looking at it.
And to be fair, he's going to have to separate himself soon. Jackson is playing extremely well during camp, Grimes has been his usual quality self and you can't dislodge Robinson from his starting job with a crowbar. There are few people who believe in Owens' ability as strongly as I do, but he's got to prove it. Doing some damage against Randy Moss, Wes Welker, Julian Edelman and the rest of the Patriots' deep receiving corps would go a long way.
So there's one to watch.