Patriots Blog: Belichick Offers High Praise For Thompkins, Mayo
FOXBORO (CBS) — Patriots training camp is in full swing as we hit Day 2 here at Gillette Stadium.
Levan Reid brings you all the updates from Foxboro:
11:23 a.m.: We have our first injury of camp.
Wide receiver Greg Orton, who was just re-signed on Wednesday, was carted off the field during practice. He was on the Pats’ practice squad late last season.
9:47 a.m.: The players are taking the field for their second day of practice, and Bill Belichick has already spoken to the media. Here are some of the highlights of what he had to say:
– Belichick felt the players looked good in conditioning drills and the first day went fine. They are still in the re-installation process and Saturday is a big day because it’s the first time the team will be in pads. Coach mentioned he’s looking forward to that.
– Just like Tom Brady said Thursday, coach also said Kembrell Thompkins has been a welcome sight in his second year.
“He’s a hard-working kid, one of our hardest workers really,” said Belichick. “He is very attentive and very coachable.”
KT gets it.
– The conversation moved to Jerod Mayo, and coach said he’s one of the best leaders that he’s ever been around. Mayo makes a difference on both the defense and the offense, and he communicates with everybody.
Belichick said the team revolves around him more than any player, which I found that surprising.
“Not that there aren’t other players instrumental in that, but he touches pretty much everybody,” said Belichick. “Not just the defensive players but all the guys. Not just the older guys but the younger guys. He’s a veteran but he’s still attached to young guys like Jamie Collins and [Dont’a] Hightower, in addition to other players not at his position.
“He has a great work ethic and great presence on the field. He has a great personality that is professional but also has a good report with all the players and coaches,” Belichick continued. “He’s as well repsected as any player in the locker room, and one of the ebst overall team leaders, a glue and chemistry guy, that I have been around.”
Belichick also praised Mayo for his communication on the field.
“When you play a position in the middle of the defense, it’s like playing quarterback – you’re in the middle of the offense,” he explained. “You have to be the main communicator, the person that everything runs through. That’s inherent in the position of linebacker, middle linebacker, just like it is in quarterback on offense. Some of that comes with the position. It would be hard for a cornerback to do that or a wide receiver. They could do it maybe off the field but it would be hard to do it on the field just because that’s not the way really the communication flows.”
High praise from Bill for one of his favorite players.
Follow Levan Reid on Twitter @LevanReid.
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