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Patriots.com News Blitz - 08/16/05

Bill Belichick announced yesterday that Tom Brady will play in the upcoming preseason game against the New Orleans Saints. There had been media speculation that Brady had some sort of arm injury based on the lack of throwing in practice this past week. Brady threw very little during yesterday's morning practice, but was back to making all the throws during the evening session. He also had a heavy workload during Sunday's practice. Adam Kilgore of the Boston Globe and Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald both offer reports on Brady.

Doug Flutie made some waves yesterday when he was on the wrong side of a Don Davis hit. Davis had intercepted a Flutie pass over the middle and ran the ball toward the end-zone where it was only Flutie who had a chance to make the tackle but he was knocked to the ground by a Davis stiff arm. Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald and Chris Kennedy of the *Republican *offer a report on Flutie.

Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald reports that no one Patriots player gets special treatment. Even some of their star players are asked to play special teams as in past years when players such as Tedy Bruschi, Rodney Harrison and Mike Vrabel have all been key contributers on special teams. One could say it's the reason why the Patriots have been so successful. That reasoning began to be questioned when linebacker Mike Vrabel suffered a left-ankle injury on a special teams play during the Bengals preseason game this past Friday. Patriots special teams veteran Don Davis commented on the injury. "OK, so Mike Vrabel got hurt on special teams. I know what people are saying. But he's played that position on this team for four years now. It's just one of those things. Accidents are part of the game. If he would have got hurt in the defensive position, someone would have said, 'Well, why is he still in the game?' You can do that (second-guessing) all day," said Davis.

Tom Curran of the Providence Journal reports that nearly 20 players were unavailable for the morning practice yesterday and Patriots linebacker Ryan Claridge was put on injured reserve.

Alan Greenberg of the Hartford Courant offers a story on Patriots running back Corey Dillon. Dillon is entering his second year with the Patriots and received a two-year, $10 million contract extension during the offseason. Dillon commented on the success of his past season. "I went on the NFL network and watched a few Super Bowl clips," Dillon said. "I got chills. It still hasn't hit me. I still can't believe we accomplished that goal."

The New England Patriots sold the naming rights of their indoor practice facility to businessman Jack Blais earlier this summer. It is expected to be announced today that Blais will be donating the naming rights to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. The practice facilty will now be called the Dana-Farber Field House. Sasha Talcott of the Boston Globe writes that the unusual 10-year deal will give Dana-Farber much-needed national visibility. The Patriots will let the cancer institute use Gillette Stadium for events, and the team kicked in hundreds of tickets that Dana-Farber can use for patients and to court potential donors.

Tom Curran of the Providence Journal offers his daily Patriots blog with notes and commentary.

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