FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick said the team has not made a decision on whether to bring 39-year-old linebacker Junior Seau back for another season.
"I don't think it's closer to having a commitment one way or another," Belichick said after wrapping up the team's two-day passing camp on Thursday. "We're just not there yet. ... I'd say it would probably be closer to training camp than mini-camp."
Rookie draftees, including first-round pick Jerod Mayo, joined fellow linebacker Victor Hobson and other veterans new to the team for a second day of passing, blocking and special teams drills.
Belichick was back in his familiar position straddling two practicing fields while wielding a whistle. Belichick and his coaches tutored Mayo and Hobson and other players new to the team for a second day of passing, blocking and special teams drills.
"We don't have pads on and some of these (guys) are doing things for the first time," Belichick said. "It's hard to evaluate anybody when they do something once. You teach it to them, they don't do it well, you correct them and they come back and do it the next time and the next time."
Belichick said these are valuable days leading up to June's mini-camp and the opening of training camp in late July.
"When everybody knows what they're doing and have a little bit of confidence and they've done something previously, then they have a fair chance to go out there to do it against somebody else," Belichick said.
Many of the players on hand the last two days in Foxborough will return on Monday as the Patriots continue their offseason program.
"For us rookies, we're just still trying to absorb the system and be able to execute it as fast as we possibly can and show we can digest it," said third-round draft choice Kevin O'Connell, who's looking for a roster spot after being drafted out of San Diego State last month.
Despite the option of bringing back Seau, the Patriots were determined to get younger at the linebacker position this offseason. In addition to the free agent Hobson, the Patriots added Mayo, third-round draft pick Shawn Crable out of Michigan and sixth-round pick Bo Ruud from Nebraska in the 2008 NFL Draft.
Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press