Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots
|—||Patriots Training Camp Notes: Darrelle Revis Making Life Difficult For Offense - Extra Points - Boston.com|
We still have yet to see Dobson and Thompkins has flashed early in camp. But who catches more balls in 2014, the second-round pick or the undrafted guy?
We’re one week into training camp for the New England Patriots, and just one week away from their first preseason game, so it’s time to take a look at what we’ve learned so far about this edition of the Pats.
It’s hard not to be excited, especially on the defensive side of the ball, where the Pats are as healthy as we could’ve hoped headed into camp. Vince Wilfork, Tommy Kelly and Will Smith, all coming off major injuries, appear to be on track for the start of the season.
On the back end, the secondary has been as expected with Revis and Browner leading the way. Browner’s attitude and Revis’ high level of play have already seemed to bring a new swagger to the Pats defense that has been missing for a long time.
We’re now a full week into training camp and the team has had five-straight practices in pads (though the intensity was a little dialed back today per reports). We’ll have some general thoughts about what we’ve heard and learned in this first week later today.
For now, here are some tweets that stood out about today’s practice.
Top plays: Ryan Mallett long bomb TD to Shane Vereen (CB Justin Green in coverage), Tom Brady to Julian Edelman connection up right sideline— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) July 31, 2014
James White broke free during 11v11s and when everyone went to let up, Revis dropped him.— Mark Daniels (@MarkDanielsPJ) July 31, 2014
Another tough day for Garoppolo. Was 0 for 4 in 7-on-7s and threw a pick-6 to Butler in 11-on-11s.— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) July 31, 2014
LB Steve Beauharnais has impressed me multiple times in #Patriots training camp, as well. Good reserve LB. Can cover, play special teams.— Doug Kyed (@DougKyedNESN) July 31, 2014
Defense FIRED UP today…just kept top off group out of ez twice, started chanting “hell no we won’t go”. I don’t get that, but theyre happy— shalise manza young (@shalisemyoung) July 31, 2014
McCourty just stopped Ridley at the goal line and the defense went nuts— Mark Daniels (@MarkDanielsPJ) July 31, 2014
Darrelle Revis with a pick-six off Tom Brady in team work with the offense starting backed up at the 1-yd line. Nice anticipation by 24.— Erik Frenz (@ErikFrenz) July 31, 2014
I think at this point you can’t read too much into any of it. They’re moving guys around, giving them reps at various spots to show what they can do. The thing I look at most is who is getting the reps, especially in the 1-v-1’s. Not so much how they do, but the guys who get the most reps are the ones who are auditioning.
But as I’ve said many times this offseason, Connolly’s advantage is he can play guard or center. Wendell is only a center. But Connolly also has a sizable salary that is a consideration on him as well.
It’s tough to say how it will all fit together, and certainly if Stork’s injury is significant it becomes less and less likely that he’s going to win the starting center spot out of camp. Every rep for him was vital and each day that goes by without him is a setback.
I don’t think we can look past Josh Kline either, he’s stood out in 1-v-1’s. And then you have Marcus Cannon who could probably play four of the five OL positions.
We’re not even a week into camp, there’s still a lot that can and will happen.