Recapping the fifth day of New England Patriots training camp.
The New England Patriots returned to the field on Tuesday morning for their fifth day of training camp. A handful of players have stood out in practice thus far, however, there’s still much work to be done.
According to the Patriots team website, the squad is scheduled to practice on Wednesday, August 2, and Thursday, August 3. After that, New England will participate in joint practices with the Jacksonville Jaguars on August 7 & 8, before the two teams’ preseason matchup on August 10.
Here’s what we learned from Day 4 of Patriots training camp:
The unknown wide receiver wearing jersey-number 16 on Day 4 of training camp has been identified. Following Rob Ninkovich’s retirement, New England filled their vacant roster spot with second-year wide receiver, K.J. Maye, per a press release from the team:
"“Maye, 23, was originally signed by the N.Y. Giants as a rookie free agent out of Minnesota on May 6, 2016. The 5-foot-8, 191-pounder, was released by the Giants at the end of training camp and joined the Tennessee Titans practice squad on Dec. 28, 2016. He was released by Tennessee on May 19, 2017.”"
NESN’s Doug Kyed reported that safety Duron Harmon and wide receiver Cody Hollister were the only players absent from Day 5 of training camp. Harmon missed Sunday’s practice with a knee injury while Hollister tallied his third absence after suffering an upper-body injury on Day 2.
The Providence Journal’s Mark Daniels pointed out that wide receivers Danny Amendola and Malcolm Mitchell “were [at practice] but didn’t participate”. The two wide receivers spent the fourth day of camp on a separate field working on conditioning.
Adding wide receiver K.J. Maye will help reduce the blow from Amendola, Mitchell, and Hollister’s missed time.
Daniels also confirmed that linebacker Dont’a Hightower and defensive tackle Alan Branch were still on the physically unable to perform list.
NESN’s Zack Cox noted that former Patriots long snapper Lonnie Paxton was in attendance for head coach Bill Belichick’s morning press conference. Paxton was at practice “to officially retire as a Patriot” according to the Boston Herald’s Jeff Howe.
During Belichick’s presser, Zack Cox quoted the head coach praising safety Jordan Richards, saying:
"“He hasn’t had a lot of opportunity for playing time, but I think we know what we have with him.”"
Phil Perry of CSN New England added, quoting Belichick saying of Richards:
"“I think he’s gonna be very competitive for playing time with [the safeties].”"
WEEI’s Ryan Hannable also quoted Belichick touching on defensive end Kony Ealy’s “versatility”:
"“He’s a smart kid. He works hard. He’s building his versatility. We’ll see how that goes.”"
Shortly after Belichick’s press conference, the Boston Globe’s Jim McBride shared this video of the team hitting the field for warmups:
According to Zack Cox, during practice, second-year linebacker Elandon Roberts suffered a “left ankle/foot” injury. Roberts walked “very slowly off the field”, “barely [putting] any weight on that foot” Cox noted.
Shortly after, Mark Daniels reported that Roberts returned to the field after “trainers wrapped up his foot/ankle.” The Patriots, who are thin at linebacker, are lucky Roberts’ injury was not serious. With Dont’a Hightower still on the PUP list, 33-year old David Harris would’ve been the team’s top inside linebacker.
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The injury bug continued buzzing around the practice field. Doug Kyed reported that tight end James O’Shaughnessy “[walked] off the main practice field with head trainer Jim Whalen.” Musket Fire named O’Shaughnessy the favorite to win New England’s third tight end spot.
Kyed also reported that wide receiver Julian Edelman and cornerback Stephon Gilmore were “thrown off the field” after engaging in a “scrap” during practice. Zack Cox added that wideout Chris Hogan, who clashed with cornerback Cyrus Jones on Day 2, “pulled Edelman off Gilmore”. After practice, Ryan Hannable quoted Hogan saying of Edelman and Gilmore’s flare:
"“They will shake hands at the end of the day and we’ll be over it.”"
ESPN’s Mike Reiss provided more insight on Coach Belichick’s policy on fighting:
According to Doug Kyed, safety Devin McCourty, cornerback Justin Coleman, and rookie defensive back Damarius Travis all collected interceptions on Day 5. Cornerback Eric Rowe and rookies Deatrich Wise, D.J. Killings, and Jason Thompson recorded pass breakups.
Mark Daniels confirmed that McCourty picked off Jacoby Brissett during one-on-one drills. Travis intercepted Jimmy Garoppolo “in the end zone“. And Coleman picked off a “bad pass” from Garoppolo during eleven-on-elevens.
MassLive’s Kevin Duffy reported that rookie defensive end Deatrich Wise earned reps “with Trey Flowers, Malcom Brown, and Lawrence Guy on the [defensive line]”. Duffy also noted that rookie linebacker Harvey Langi had reps with veterans David Harris, Shea McClellin, and Kyle Van Noy.
Quarterback results from Day 5 are below, courtesy of Doug Kyed:
Jeff Howe noted that “Garoppolo’s 11 completions went to 11 different players.”