Patriots

New Pats CB Gilmore on battling WRs in camp: 'We're just trying to push each other'

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New Pats CB Gilmore on battling WRs in camp: 'We're just trying to push each other'

FOXBORO - You’ve probably read plenty of tweets and stories that mentioned Brandin Cooks making a tremendous catch with Stephon Gilmore hanging all over him some 40 yards down the field. The coaching staff ruled it a catch in Friday’s controlled scrimmage that pitted Patriots against Patriots. Gilmore, however, wasn’t buying it.

“You think he caught it?” asked Gilmore following the session. “I don’t know if he did. I don’t know. I’ll have to look at the film.”

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Gilmore barely smiled as he said that. His competitiveness in camp has rivaled fellow cornerback Malcolm Butler and contributed to that skirmish with Julian Edelman a couple of days prior that resulted in both players being ejected from practice.

“It happens," said Gilmore. “It’s practice. We dealt with it. No hard feelings.”

You get the distinct impression that won’t be the last time Gilmore frustrates a wide receiver, be it in practice or the games. His playing strength is impressive. He has consistently tied up Edelman, Cooks and Chris Hogan at the line of scrimmage, and seemed to take pleasure in escorting DJ Foster into the stands on a punt return. 

“I’m a big corner,” he said. “I just try to use my physical abilities to jam receivers and do whatever I can to slow the offense down. That’s what they brought me here to do.”

Once Gilmore gets his hands on a receiver, the 6-1, 190-pounder knows he’s in charge.

“I think so,” he acknowledged. “If play with great technique and get my hands on em, I can control any receiver that I go against. I just gotta keep working on my technique and go from there.”

It would be inaccurate to say Gilmore has won every battle. Cooks has gotten him a few times. Edelman, too. But that’s what you expect. Both sides constantly testing each other and not backing down. We’ve even seen numerous occasions where it’s not Gilmore or Butler’s turn but they tap out another defensive back so they can get that rep against that particular player.

“A lot of times, when you see the one-on-ones, guys will kind of matchup up a little bit so that they can have that competition, whether it’s pass rush-pass protection drill or a tackling drill or a one-on-one route coverage drill or whatever it is,” said Bill Belichick. “Again, not that they don’t work against other guys, but sometimes you just want to go out there and compete on that particular play.”

“I think it’s healthy...”

Gilmore agrees, “We are just trying to push each other. With different receivers, you play different techniques so you ‘re just coming out here making each other better.”

No argument here.

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NBC Sports Boston Breakfast Pod: Panicking over the Patriots wide receivers; Red Sox continue to win

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NBC Sports Boston Breakfast Pod: Panicking over the Patriots wide receivers; Red Sox continue to win

1:23 - Marc Bertrand and Phil Perry join Trenni Kusnierek on Early Edition to discuss Tom Brady’s comments after today’s practice, and they compare this year’s wide receivers to the receivers on the 2006 team.  

6:39 - Evan Drellich phones in to break down the Red Sox 2-1 win over the Phillies and how this team doesn’t seem to ever lose close games. 

10:24 - Tom Giles, Kevin Duffy, Hardy, and Phil Perry give their panic meter rankings for the numerous Patriots injuries sustained during training camp practices. 

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Quick Slants the Podcast: What does Tom Brady's contract adjustment say about his future with the Patriots?

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Quick Slants the Podcast: What does Tom Brady's contract adjustment say about his future with the Patriots?

2:20 - Tom Brady received a contract adjustment where he can earn up to $5 million in incentives. Are both sides justified in how his contract has been handled? What does the future hold for Brady?

5:45 - It's not just about the amount of money for Brady but the contract can be used as a measurement to other player's deals around the league.

11:55 - Could Tom Brady be franchise tagged after his contract is up?

15:00 - Patriots seemed to have dodged a bullet with the severity of Phillip Dorsett's injury, who had to leave practice on Tuesday.

17:20 - Why haven't the Patriots brought in Dez Bryant for a workout?

22:45 - Thoughts on Eric Decker and how he can fit in the Patriots offense.

24:45 - What are the things to watch for in the 2nd Patriots preseason game on Thursday night against the Eagles.

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