For all the talk about renewed energy at Patriots camp this summer, Deatrich Wise has always brought his own unique brand of energy to the team in his first three seasons. The defensive lineman has had perhaps the strongest training camp of his career and appears poised to make an expanded impact this season, both on the field and with his infectious smile and personality that have made him a locker room favorite since he joined the team in 2017.
"Energy is contagious," said Wise on Tuesday after practice. He's now one of the veterans who will be counted on and is emerging into a leadership position after departures and opt-outs have created a youth movement in the front seven.
"With all the young players that our team has now acquired, I feel like me being a fourth-year player I've definitely shown my leadership in my actions and the way I speak," said Wise. "I'm not as big of a 'rah-rah' guy. I'm more 'bring people to the side and talk to them, help them out with the little things, then watch them do what they do.' My leadership is more personal but also through my example on the field and my energy."
That leadership has been needed this summer. Wise appears to have bulked during an offseason spent training with his brothers, Daniel and Solomon. Hopefully, the extra strength will pay off in the trenches and result in his biggest contribution since his rookie season when he played a career-high 51 percent of the defensive snaps.
But Wise is still ready to do whatever is asked of him
"My role is whatever the team wants it to be," said Wise. "When adding on muscle you do put on weight so I got a little stronger. I'm not out here just eating cupcakes and getting fat. I'm putting on good weight but it comes with muscle, it's one thing that has transferred over to being a stronger player."
That strength has showed up in August during padded practices, which often featured multiple one-on-one work. Wise dominated his fair share of reps, causing observers to wonder if the pass rush specialist might be ready to expand his contributions at a time when the team could really use some early-down depth.
For his part, Wise continues to grind.
"It's a learning process for us," said Wise, who was reminded of the last time the team didn't hold any joint practices. "We just practiced against each other to give us the opportunity to learn our skills and perfect our skills but also help the people from across from us and build our communication as a defense and a team."
Through August, Wise is doing his part to step up and could emerge as a surprising key defensive player this season.
The Patriots returned to the upper practice fields on Tuesday in full pads for the second day in a row. While Cam Newton returned to practice, starting offensive linemen Isaiah Wynn and David Andrews missed their second-straight day.
Returning to practice: Cam Newton
Limited: Jakobi Meyers (red jersey)
Absent during open portion: J.C. Jackson (new), Nick Thurman (new), Isaiah Wynn, David Andrews, Michael Barnett, Damien Harris, Beau Allen, Michael Jackson
Webex Quotes of Note
Devin Asiasi on the rookie class and working with Dalton Keene:
"I can say that throughout the whole rookie class, I think we've create relationships with everybody, just helping each other transition from college to the professional level. Obviously, Dalton being in the same unit as me, same room as me, we have a lot more time together and we are able to help each other out on certain things."
Lamar Miller on what it was like playing against the Patriots:
"You just knew when you play the Patriots you have to come with your "A" game. You know what team you're playing, you know what type of coach you're playing. So just knowing coming into Patriots week, whether at home or away, you know they always bring their "A" game. Now, just being here and seeing how they run things, you can tell why you always have to be prepared."
Julian Edelman on the progress of the team this summer:
"I think we're still learning. Anytime you have a situation that we're in right now... I mean we haven't played another team, so each day is a learning experience of its own. I think we have a group of people who are wanting to learn, that's what we're learning right now. We'll learn more as it goes on, I feel like we're continually learning."