View a collection of the best images from Patriots Training Camp in Foxborough on Monday, August 8, 2016.
The tempo and intensity during the recent training camp practices has been rather high, and with the New Orleans Saints set to hit town on Tuesday things figured to slow down a bit. That was the case on Monday as the Patriots donned shorts and shells during their two-hour practice that featured less contact but at times plenty of activity.
While the physicality obviously wasn't evident there was plenty of feisty competitiveness on display. The main reason for that was the presence of Julian Edelman, who is as feisty and competitive as any member of the team.
Edelman was removed from PUP on Sunday, but it wasn't until today where he was fully invested in the day's activities. After taking part in position drills, Edelman was inserted into the lineup as the offense went into full 11-on-11 work – and he was his normal productive and pesky self.
The slot receiver ran without the hint of a limp and showed great quickness darting across the middle and working himself free into zones in all areas. He caught several passes, none more impressive than the one he made on his last play of the day.
Tom Brady and the rest of the "first team" began some late-game, situational work and began to move the ball deep into the defense's territory. Needing a touchdown Brady and the offense from themselves inside the 10, and Edelman ran a post corner against cornerback Justin Coleman heading toward the back right corner of the end zone.
Brady lofted a perfect spiral and Edelman, who was tightly covered on the play, outfought Coleman for the ball and spiked it emphatically around several members of the defense.
That certainly ruffled some feathers as defensive backs coach Josh Boyer, safeties coach Steve Belichick and linebackers coach Brian Flores all took exception and barked in Edelman's direction. The wideout seemed to relish the agitation and chirped right back before being led away from the corner by several of his offensive teammates.
While the day wasn't the most physical or intense overall, Edelman made sure the competition level did not suffer at all.
In addition to Edelman's big day, here are one man's blogservations from Monday's practice, the team's 10th of training camp and fourth without pads.
-Dion Lewis (knee), Tre' Jackson (knee), Sebastian Vollmer and Danny Amendola (knee, ankle) all remained on PUP. Jackson was spotted on the field but did not have his helmet.
-Jonathan Cooper (foot) and Bryce Williams also missed practice while Bryan Stork (reported concussion), D.J. Foster, Keshawn Martin and Donald Brown all suited up but mostly did some conditioning work on the Revs practice field. Defensive lineman Anthony Johnson joined the group on the conditioning hill.
-Duron Harmon removed his red, non-contact jersey and was in his normal blue No. 30, but Jonathan Freeny took his place and was in red. Chris Hogan and Logan Ryan also continued to wear red.
-The players came out for practice a bit later than normal and several members of the coaching staff were on the fields first. Dante Scarnecchia, Brian Daboll, Ivan Fears, Brendan Daly, Joe Judge and Ray Ventrone were all standing between the practice fields as the players began to trickle out. Normally the players and support staff (ball boys, etc.) are the first to arrive.
-The quarterbacks and centers worked on the exchange before practice. The combinations were Brady and Stork, Joe Thuney and Jimmy Garoppolo, David Andrews and Jacoby Brissett and Ted Karras with Scarnecchia. Kyler Kerbyson also rotated in occasionaly.
-In addition to his receiver work, Edelman also jumped into the mix on punt returns. He took several throughout the morning, starting with some pre-practice work with Cyrus Jones, V'Angelo Bentley and DeAndre Carter. Edelman also handled punts with Jones, Bentley and Chris Harper during the first special teams period and was part of the hands team that worked on recovering onside kicks in the second special teams period.
-Chris Hogan continues to show a nice rapport with Brady and was active once again on Monday. His best moment came during a hurry-up drill late on a one-handed grab near the left sideline where he bobbled the ball slightly before securing as he neared the sideline. He may not have had both feet in bounds but it was a terrific catch nonetheless.
-Alan Branch went to the sideline with an apparent ankle injury and spent time with trainer Jim Whalen. It looked like the defensive tackle had his ankle re-taped but he did not return to any team action after that. Jabaal Sheard also was attended to by the medical staff, which worked on his right leg. Sheard was able to return to action, however.
-Clay Harbor also saw his workload increased in his second day since returning from PUP. The tight end was actively involved throughout, catching passes and taking part in 11-on-11 work. He made a nice catch near the right sideline during situational drills and alertly leaped over various equipment that was on the ground in between the fields, showing nice agility.
-LeGarrette Blount, Joey Iosefa, Tyler Gaffney and James Develin all spent time hitting a blocking sled behind the far end zone while the rest of the offense was on the field working on hurry-up packages. That group comprises the team's "bigger backs" who don't necessarily fit into the team's passing offense, particularly in late-game, hurry-up situations.
-Matt Provencher, who spent last season as the Patriots medical director before leaving during the offseason, was on hand for practice. He was accompanied on the field by Whalen and spent some time chatting with Joe Cardona. Like the long snapper, Provencher has ties to the Navy.
-Steve Dubin, one of the agents for Jimmy Garoppolo, Edelman and Brady, was at practice. Brady walked off the field with Dubin after practice.
-Gaffney turned in a solid effort during Sunday's run-heavy scrimmage and it appears as if the coaches took noticed. Gaffney was the first back during the team action early in practice and received several carries when the offense worked on the running game. Tough to determine how well he did since the players weren't in pads but the Stanford product later stressed the importance of knowing and understanding his assignments and felt the work was beneficial.
-Nate Washington was involved offensively for the first time during camp. He missed several practices after vomiting on the field on the first day and Monday was the first time he received reps during any team periods. He didn't have any passes thrown in his direction.
-Brady and Garoppolo were joined by Rob Gronkowski, Martellus Bennett, Harbor and Washington on the opposite field during a special teams period.
-Ventrone worked 1-on-1 with Brandon King while the rest of the team worked on the opposite field. King, much like Matthew Slater, is strictly a special teams player and often works on his techniques when the others are going 11-on-11 elsewhere.
-Gronkowski and Hogan were able to secure several Stephen Gostkowski onside kick attempts. Gronkowski, who has had some occasional drops during camp, including one on Monday, was flawless catching high bouncers from Gostkowski. He also alertly batted one attempt sideways out of bounds. Edelman used an effective block from Patrick Chung and to corral an up-the-middle attempt. Gostkowski also tried a mortar kick that Devin McCourty fielded around the 20.
-Robert Kraft was in attendance and spent some time chatting with Edelman.
-Jamie Collins makes at least one impressive play on defense every practice. On Monday he batted down a Brady pass with ridiculous athleticism.
-Garoppolo appears to be struggling a bit lately and on Monday his accuracy was again inconsistent. He had a handful of throws sail off target and also continues to hold the ball a bit longer than it would seem the coaches would like. During his turn at the two-minute drill he tried to squeeze one to a well-covered Harper and instead hit Kamu Grugier-Hill right in the numbers for an interception.
-Later, Garoppolo had a couple of completions that weren't overly accurate before finishing the drive with a touchdown to Harper that came on a play in which he held the ball for several seconds before unleashing. He did make some effective throws as well – one the Bennett and another to a crossing Edelman – but overall he's been a bit off in recent days.
-Brady and Garoppolo added some equipment to their post-practice barrel work. On Monday they had the barrel inside one of the round pads the defensive players have been using to help their tackling techniques. Perhaps this was to help out in some scoring system the quarterbacks have, but neither was overly successful during the competition on this day.
-Shea McClellin saw some time at linebacker on Monday. Most of his work has been at defensive end but he was off the line at times during 11-on-11 action.
-Keep an eye on AJ Derby, who seems to be making a push the last few days. His athleticism was apparent during spring camps and the last couple of days he's shown great hands during team work. On Monday he made a nice catch with Jordan Richards applying tight coverage. He's shown strong hands and the ability to work in tight quarters.
-Ramon Humber, Jones, Thuney, Gaffney, Harbor and Harmon were among those who spoke with the media after practice.
-The Saints are set to hit Foxborough tomorrow with practice kicking off at 9:15 a.m. Belichick will conduct his press conference at 8:45 a.m. As always, please check with Patriots.com for the latest updates in the practice schedule.