FOXBORO (CBS) – Here are some observations on day 3 of Patriots training camp.
The Pats were in pads for the first time in camp and that meant for the first time there were contact drills.
Players seemed ready to finally hit and offensive and defensive lines took part in testing each other. First round pick Chandler Jones looks as good as advertised. He was physical and brought an array of moves to the drills. He still needs some work. Too many times he was left wide of the play and out of position. Offensive lineman Robert Gallery showed some initial pop out there but he looks like he’s on the down side of his career. He was on the ground too much during drills
Tom Brady’s connection with Brandon Lloyd is coming into shape. Lloyd is making plays and catches all over the field. He is clearly one of the best athletes out there. He knows the system having played under Josh McDaniels before, now he just needs to gain the trust of the quarterback.
There were some injuries on the third day of camp. Rookie defensive end Justin Francis was carted off the field with an apparent knee injury. Linebacker Tracy White left the field also and did not return. The big news though was Rob Gronkowski. Gronk cut his chin during one drill, he went to the locker room and then came back to the field 15 minutes later, all bandaged up.
Tom Brady is in his 13th season in the NFL and thankfully all of them have been with the Patriots. Now down at training camp, Brady is throwing to some familiar faces that have come back to the team. Jabar Gafney and Donte Stallworth have left the Pats to play elsewhere but now they are back catching passes from Brady. Tom says so far so good, they are still on the same page.
“It’s been a lot of fun. There is so much familiarity with what they’re capable of and what they can do. It doesn’t seem like it’s taken long for them to kind of get re-acclimated to what we do. Both of them are making a lot of plays out there and it’s exciting for a quarterback,” Tom said.
Tom’s trust is something that the wide receivers fight for. Tom feels these guys had his trust before and even though they left, they have his trust now.
“I think there is a certain level of trust that you have. Offensive football is about 11 guys doing their job. You can’t do anyone else’s job on offense. If 11 guys aren’t doing the right thing, it doesn’t end up being a good play. You have guys who you’ve played with, who you’ve won games with, that you really have a lot of trust in. You can go out there early and execute at a relatively high level.”
Next up on the Tom trust wagon is Brandon Lloyd. He is new to the Pats but not to Josh McDaniels’ system. Tom knows Brandon could do big things for the team.
“He knows what he’s doing out there. It’s not like there is a lot of studying the playbook,” Brady said. “He wants to be a big part of this offense. I obviously want to help him become a big part of this offense. So there is constant communication between the two of us.”
10:00 a.m. Update
Day 3 of Patriots training. This will be the first day the Pats will hit the field in full pads.
This is what Bill Belichick loves. Pads means hitting, and that builds character and toughness. I am sure for some of the defensive players also, putting the pads on means camp is picking up some steam.
Tom Brady is set to address the media today. The Patriots quarterback was pictured cliff diving in Costa Rica just recently.
Now after those questions are done, the main topic should be his relationship with Josh McDaniel. The last time the two were together, they set records. It will be interesting to see where Tom feels they are in their development of getting the offense to resemble what Josh wants.