The official start to training camp won't take place until Thursday but several Patriots reported to work on Monday. In general, rookies, quarterbacks and those dealing with injuries arrive in Foxborough ahead of the rest of the team, and there was some news regarding the latter category.
Various reports indicated defensive tackle Alan Branch and linebacker Dont'a Hightower will open camp on the active-PUP list. Both would be eligible to return anytime, perhaps even before camp officially opens, but at least for now aren't ready to go.
ESPNBoston.com says the main intrigue surrounding the roster will be at the backup positions. The Boston Globe agrees, claiming it will be tough for rookies to earn a spot on the Patriots roster. NESN.com ranks the Patriots most competitive positions heading into camp.
Expectations remain high for this year's squad. Add USA Today to the list of those believing the Patriots will go undefeated, although WEEI.com has had enough of that talk. Mike Gillislee is the Globe's player spotlight today. Meanwhile the Boston Herald looks at the secondary, which they project to be strong, as well as linebackers, a group they feel needs some depth.
The Boston Herald says the road to repeating will be more difficult than you think. The Attleboro Sun Chronicle has five questions entering camp. MassLive.com believes 2017 could be the most compelling season in Patriots history.
ESPNBoston.com also has news of the Patriots latest additions to the coaching staff.
Elsewhere, ESPN.com ranks the backup quarterback situations for every team in the league. The Washington Post wonders if a full season of work might make life more difficult on soon-to-be 40-year-old Tom Brady. Finally, the Patriots have been in talks with former Pro Bowl corner Brandon Flowers, who is currently a free agent.