Patriots release camp dates; open practices begin July 27

Patriots release camp dates; open practices begin July 27

Football is coming.

The Patriots announced on Thursday that veterans will report to training camp on Wednesday, July 26 and that the first public practice will take place the following day.

Each of the team's first four practices -- from July 27-30 -- are scheduled to take place on the practice fields behind Gillette Stadium "in the nine o'clock hour," according to the Patriots. Updates to the training camp schedule, including more specific start times for practices, can be found at patriots.com/trainingcamp.

The Patriots Hall of Fame will hold its induction ceremony for former corner Raymond Clayborn on Saturday, July 29 around midday following that morning's training camp practice. Held on the plaza outside the Hall at Patriot Place, the ceremony will be free and open to the public.

The Patriots will host the Jaguars for two days of joint practices open to the public on Monday, Aug. 7 and Tuesday, Aug. 8. The preseason opener for both clubs will take place at Gillette Stadium on Aug. 10.

Running the hills helped Patriots climb the hill in Super Bowl LI

Running the hills helped Patriots climb the hill in Super Bowl LI

HOUSTON -- The snap counts tell the story.

Tom Brady and the Patriots ran 99 plays in Sunday's Super Bowl LI 34-28 overtime win over the Falcons. Matt Ryan and the Falcons? They ran 49.

SUPER BOWL LI: GREATEST COMEBACK IN HISTORY

The effort and energy the Falcons expended defensively over the course of four quarters and overtime seemed to take its toll by the end. They didn't admit it after the game, but they were gassed. Where their defensive line and linebackers were flying around, making plays, and harassing Brady throughout the first three quarters, they were slowed in the fourth and overtime.

Nearly 100 plays -- 63 of them pass plays, during which big bodies were asked to get up the field -- will do that.

According to Pro Football Focus, the Falcons pressured Brady just 6 times over his last 38 drop-backs, and he wasn't bothered during any of his final 15 drop-backs of the game.

If the Falcons defense was exhausted from the workload, how was the offense it faced not equally worn down? The Patriots credited the hills behind their practice fields back at Gillette Stadium.

"The [bleeping] hills" is how you'll hear them referenced occasionally in the Patriots locker room. We chronicled the importance of the hills to the Patriots' conditioning regimen during training camp, but the Patriots use them throughout the season. Typically they dial back the up-hill sprints as the season wears on and players are looking to conserve energy and manage injuries.

But they were on the hills as recently as their last week of practices before traveling to Houston. “We got these stupid hills in Foxboro that we have to run, like literally, until we left," Edelman said. "We all bitch and complain about it,” Edelman said. “But hey, we do it, we put in the work, we put in the conditioning.”

"We were running the hill last week," Martellus Bennett said. "And I was like, who runs the hill in week 23? Guys were tired, but guys got out there, they ran full speed up the hill. We're just a team that works. We're a team full of workers"

Curran: Uproar over Brady starting is a tad over the top

Curran: Uproar over Brady starting is a tad over the top

News Tom Brady will start Thursday night seems to have alarmed the pearl-clutchers in the New England region. Those that haven’t fainted dead away are furiously fanning themselves with their hymnals wondering why, Why, WHY????!!!!!

I honestly don’t understand the question.

I mean, I see where people can make a case for a different kind of rotation than Brady to Jacoby Brissett with Jimmy Garoppolo just watching. 

I can make a case for Garoppolo playing. Watch this!

Garoppolo is coming off a week where penalties, drops and pressure helped him have a bad night in Carolina. Additionally, he exhibited a high level of squirreliness, hasn’t shown the requisite “first, do no harm” mindset necessary on every possession and kinda needs to be back on the steed, if you ask me.

Brady? He’s as tuned up as he needs to be. The most important guy Thursday night is Brissett. The young man’s been very good – statistically perfect last week – but he needs to get out of the “MEDIUM” cage and step into the “FAST.”

A start for him Thursday would at least be a step up from what he’s been seeing late in games.

But - if I follow the Patriots logic correctly (and it's pretty clear what it is) Brissett’s development is precisely why Jimmy will be on ice. 

If you use your Jimmy and break your Jimmy then you’re looking at Jacoby without a net. If you break your Tommy, it’s got a month to heal.

So why risk your Jimmy? That’s the Patriots line of thinking.

It’s not beyond all comprehension as these folks and a few dozen others expressed. 

https://twitter.com/waaf86/status/771412502592749569 https://twitter.com/waaf86/status/771412502592749569

It is, however, a decision which invites conversation. And is - as I mentioned last week when we went through this prior to the Panthers game - one of the little irritation and annoyances the entire team has to deal with because of the Deflategate suspension. Goodell's penalty isn't just felt by Brady. 

For the record? Brady hasn’t played in the fourth preseason game since 2011.

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