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Patriots.com News Blitz - 7/26/2007

The blog is back!

By popular demand, there's a new post up on the official Patriots Football Weekly blog today. All the PFW writers offer their predictions for training camp, which starts tomorrow here at Gillette stadium.

If you can't make it to any of the open-to-the-public practices, just check back each day to the PFW blog. You'll find a running commentary of everything that's happening on the field (and off, for that matter, if anything of interest happens).

One of the questions needing an answer concerns Asante Samuel.

As of this moment, he remains unsigned, but is that about to change?

"The Patriots and I are working through this process, the lines of communication are open," Samuel's agent, Alonzo Shavers, told The Boston Globe in a story published today. "We all have the same goal -- for Asante to be in camp on time, or as close to on time as we can possibly have it."

However, Shavers was more cryptic in an interview with the Boston Herald.

"I have to leave you guessing, because I'm guessing," he said. "It would be an inappropriate response for me to say something that's inaccurate because I don't know. He has a couple days to do what he needs to do. There's some things that could happen. There's a couple of days where something could happen. We'll just play it by ear, that way we're managing expectations."

Even without Samuel in camp, the Pats are almost universally considered heavy favorites to win it all, but The Providence Journal makes a compelling case that their chances would be better if the opposite were true.

Head coach Bill Belichick, meantime, is, as always, focused on training camp and the players who'll be there. In a Globe interview, he talked about several aspects of camp, including the balancing act of hard hitting versus protecting players from injury.

"You want to make sure you get enough contact, but it's a fine line. It's important to get the team ready for the physical aspect of the game, to compete well with it, but at the same time not beat them up. It's not the same for everybody. Some of the young players need contact, while the older players don't always need it as much."

Finally today, many fans are no doubt starting to prepare for their fantasy football drafts. With that in mind, FOXSports.com offers a thorough preview of the best fantasy players on the Patriots.

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