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News Blitz 8/9: Prepping for Saints

As always, your most thorough and accurate source for Patriots training camp coverage is right here on Patriots.com.

Andy Hart provides his extensive blogservations from Monday's less intense practice (compared to the past couple days of scrimmaging), while on the video side, Miranda Mason and Bob Socci offer their perspective on Monday's action on the field.

Elsewhere, ESPN's blog offers a primer for Saints-Patriots joint practices, which commence this morning.

The Boston Globe provides a feature on tight end Clay Harbor, a veteran free agent who's missed most of camp due to injury but is back on the field competing for a roster spot.

"I feel good,'' said Harbor. "I feel like I'm 100 percent and ready to play and ready for these preseason games and practices and [ready to] try to win each day individually and just go from there."

The* Boston Herald *goes to the other side of the ball, where it predicts that second-year DT Malcolm Brown could become a superstar this season.

"I don't really want to look too far ahead," Brown maintained in the article. "I believe in the process of getting there. I've just got to continue to work. If I want to be there, I've got to work every day to get there."

Veteran DT Alan Branch is the focus of another feature, this one in the Sun-Chronicle.

Branch is steadily working his way back from the NFI (non-football injury list) to start camp.

"I wanted to get out here with the fellas," he said. "My defensive guys have been telling me they've missed me out there and we needed to get ready because it's a big season. They're 100 percent right, so I just wanted to get out here with the atmosphere and the guys and get my first day or two out of the way to get my feet up under me and hurry up and engulf myself in camp."

[wysifield-embeddedaudio|eid="456786"|type="embeddedaudio"|view_mode="full"]Staying on the defensive side, CSNNE.com scrutinizes the first camp of rookie cornerback and return specialist Cyrus Jones. He's struggled with the latter during training camp.

"I'm just trying to eliminate the drops and muffs altogether, and totally just get rid of that out of my game," he said Monday. "I think that's the biggest part of punt returning is possessing the ball . . . Once you do that you can use your athletic ability. But before you do that you can't do anything."

The Providence Journal gives us a closer look at rookie OL Joe Thuney, who's been playing mostly at left guard this summer.

"Just whatever the team needs," Thuney said in part. "I came in with no expectations, just wanted to work hard and try to improve and learn the playbook. Wherever they put me to play I'm going to work my hardest and try my best."

Finally today, veteran ball carrier Tyler Gaffney, on IR his first two seasons in the NFL with New England, is itching to show what he can do this preseason.

"I'm real excited," Gaffney said. "This is what you've been waiting for as a high school athlete, college athlete. It's time to put it all together."

That's what this time of year is all about in the NFL.

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