New England Head Coach Bill Belichick called an early end to the team's weekend mandatory mini-camp because of the effort put forth by the players.
Belichick did not hold practice Sunday morning as scheduled, instead letting his team break from Foxborough a day early. He said the fact that all but one team member were present for both the mandatory mini-camp and the voluntary camp helped the team more quickly accomplish its goals.
"We felt like we were far enough along because of the cooperation and the work effort and the energy that the players produced. It was time to call it off," Belichick said Monday morning.
Before letting the team go, Belichick talked to the players Saturday night about staying in shape until the start of training camp.
"I emphasized two things. One, you have to have a signed contract, and two, you have to be able to pass the physical," Belichick said. "If they can't pass the conditioning test, then they can't pass the physical, so they can't play. It's as simple as that. I'm not going to put somebody out on the field who is not ready to play pro football."
Belichick said the coaching staff is now in the process of going over the tapes from the week in order to evaluate the team. The staff will also continue to watch the players available on the market. He gave no specifics, but Belichick said the only set position on the roster was quarterback.
"It would be hard to go to camp with more than four quarterbacks," Belichick said. "These guys all deserve a chance to go to camp and show what they can do. [Any more quarterbacks] would probably congest that situation more than it would clear things up."
Training camp is scheduled to begin July 17 in Foxborough.