The New England Patriots completed another practice yesterday, with this one providing a mix of good and bad (not so good) news.
First off, here is the attendance report, as per Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald:
"Absent: CB Darrelle Revis, WR Aaron Dobson, CB Alfonzo Dennard, DL Dominique Easley, DL Armond Armstead, WR Wilson Van HooserLimited: QB Ryan Mallett, TE Rob Gronkowski, WR Matthew Slater, WR Jeremy Gallon, CB Justin Green, LB Deontae Skinner, TE D.J. Williams"
As you probably noticed, and as the title suggests, star cornerback Darrelle Revis was not at practice. This shouldn’t be a cause for concern, as nobody seems to think it is a serious injury, but it is definitely something that we should monitor going forward. Revis is key to New England’s defensive success, and we will need him healthy throughout the year to contend for a title.
Rob Gronkowski continued his rehab, doing some sprints in front of the media, which is a sign of progress. Gronk is another key element to this team, and he must be healthy in order for the Pats to advance deep into the playoffs.
Will Smith, the veteran defensive end, is looking good according to reports, as is Vince Wilfork, who is coming off a big injury. On this injury related note, Josh Boyce, the second year wideout out of TCU injured his leg during yesterday’s session, and missed the rest of practice. This allowed Kenbrell Thompkins to have a big day, as reporters raved about what they saw from the 25-year-old.
"Thompkins, who totaled 32 receptions as a rookie, has been coming down with his fair share in practice in recent days. With 2013 second-round draft choice Aaron Dobson rehabilitating from foot surgery in late February, and veteran Brandon LaFell not a full participant in practice, it’s been Thompkins taking many of the reps alongside Julian Edelman and Danny Amendola."
I have been tough on Thompkins this offseason, and I honestly thought he would be off the team come September. But it is obvious that he has made it a priority of his to improve over this offseason, and come back better in 2014. Hopefully I am pleasantly surprised when I see him in action.
On a lighter note, linebacker Jamie Collins lined up at tight end yesterday, which Tom Brady and Vince Wilfork commented on. Brady asked Collins if “he felt smarter” in the offensive huddle, while Big Vince overheard, and said, “he’s definitely not as tough”.
It’s always fun when the two sides clash in a humorous manner, as even teams like the Patriots need to let loose and have fun on occasion.
For detailed practice reports, here are a few that are terrific: