Bill Belichick did a pre-camp press conference Wednesday at Gillette Stadium and the Patriots coach clearly stepped to the microphone with a plan of verbal attack.
With Tom Brady's status heading into the new season now defined – TB12 will serve a four-game suspension to open the year – Belichick said the "priority" was now to get third-year backup Jimmy Garoppolo ready for the regular season opener in Arizona.
Belichick also made it crystal clear that Brady would return to the starting job after the four games were up.
The Boston Globe leads off breaking down just how focused Belichick is on getting Garoppolo ready to do the job. The Globe notebook also has the Patriots making a couple roster moves on the eve of camp, which were announced by Belichick himself. The* Globe *also offers up its version of Belichick's to-do list to open training camp.
What better way to kick off camp than with a 53-man roster projection from the Boston Herald? New England's assistant coaches also spoke on Wednesday, the Herald taking a look at Brian Flores move from the secondary to work with the linebackers. The Herald also notes Belichick talking about the quarterback situation, as well as Ivan Fears' thoughts on the running backs and Dante Scarnecchia lining up his offensive line options.
The* Providence Journal* says Scarnecchia will try to make things simple for the offensive line, while the paper also notes that defensive lineman Alan Branch was placed on the non-football injury list to open camp due to a reported hip issue.
ESPNBoston.com says that Garoppolo's mental aptitude puts him in position to succeed with the Patriots. The site also notes that Scarnecchia plans to limit the rotating on the offensive line, which was an issue over the last two seasons in the legendary coach's retirement absence.
ESPNBoston.com also notes that Belichick seems happy with the condition of his players as they arrived for camp, while breaking down the coach's approach to the quarterback situation.
WEEI.com says the best way to get Garoppolo ready is to prioritize preseason game action, not practice reps. WEEI.com has offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels saying that there are enough reps for all the quarterbacks to get their work in this summer. The site also describes a fired-up defensive coordinator Matt Patricia expressing the idea that his defense will be ready to lead the way in New England.
CSNNE.com has Belichick talking about how each training camp is different, and he's been to as many training camps as anyone. CSNNE.com notes McDaniels saying Garoppolo is a long way from being a "finished product."
NFL.com says the entire Patriots offensive line is one of the major position battles to be watching in training camp action in the AFC. The site also has Ryan Fitzpatrick finally reaching a deal with the Jets.
The Concord Monitor curiously says the Super Bowl-favorite Patriots open training camp with more questions than answers.