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Light work in morning, practice closed tonight

The Patriots were in shoulder pads and shorts for a light workout Tuesday morning.

Because New England played last Friday and then not again until this Saturday in Carolina, Head Coach Bill Belichick decided to split the week into two parts. From Sunday through Tuesday night in a closed practice at Foxboro Stadium, the squad has been drilled on special teams play, goal line situations and trick plays to keep both the offense and defense honest. Starting Wednesday, the Patriots will begin planning for the preseason tilt with the Panthers, whom New England will also see in Week Two of the regular season.

When the offense ran regular plays Tuesday, the passing game had some problems. Safety Tebucky Jones came up with two interceptions, getting one each from Damon Huard and Michael Bishop. Bishop was able to respond with a long connection to Shockmain Davis, who made the catch despite tight coverage from Terrell Buckley.

Cornerback Terrance Shaw, who is still working in the red "no contact" jersey after missing time with a shoulder injury, nearly had a third pick for the defense. He jumped a Ronney Daniels route and had the pass from Tom Brady go off his body, but he slipped a bit as the ball arrived and was unable to hold on.

One disappointment in the practice was the lack of activity for running back Robert Edwards. After rejoining the team in drills Monday afternoon, Edwards did not get any reps Tuesday. Belichick said the team is trying to be cautious and not throw the back into the fire right away. The coach added that there was less than a 50-50 chance of Edwards playing against Carolina Saturday.

After the practice in Foxborough Tuesday night, New England will be back at Bryant College Wednesday afternoon for a session. There will be two practices Thursday (9 a.m. and 3 p.m.), and then the team will have a closed walk-through session before leaving Friday for the Panthers game.

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