Patriots

Takeaways from Day 2 of Patriots mini-camp: Bennett okay after injury scare

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Takeaways from Day 2 of Patriots mini-camp: Bennett okay after injury scare

FOXBORO -- The Patriots completed their second day of mandatory mini-camp on Wednesday on the practice fields behind Gillette Stadium. Here are a few quick takeaways from the session:

-- The same 13 players who were not present for Tuesday's practice were not present on Wednesday: Julian Edelman, Danny Amendola, Dion Lewis, LeGarrette Blount, Rob Gronkowski, Nate Solder, Sebastian Vollmer, Shaq Mason, Tre' Jackson, Josh Kline, Logan Ryan, Duron Harmon and Nate Ebner. 

-- There were a few new absences on Day 2 of minicamp, including tight end Clay Harbor, receiver Malcolm Mitchell and running back Brandon Bolden.

-- Tom Brady ran a side session with tight end Martellus Bennett and receivers Nate Washington and Aaron Dobson while the rest of the club focused on special teams. Bennett has been actively involved in those types of sessions in each practice that has been open to reporters. 

-- Patriots safeties coach Steve Belichick conducted a session that lasted about 10 minutes where he and the players did little other than talk. While the other parts of the team were focused on position-specific drills, the group was clearly more focused on the strategic than the physical. 

-- Patriots defensive ends had an opportunity to work on their coverage skills. Working in shorts and t-shirts gives players who would normally work at the line of scrimmage to branch out a bit. 

-- During the first 11-on-11 portion of practice, Bennett spent some time walking gingerly and talking to trainer Jim Whalen. Bennett was seen lying down and having his left knee tended to. He later got to his feet and spoke with tight ends coach Brian Daboll. 

-- Rookie outside linebacker Kamu Grugier-Hill was spotted working with Brandon King during a special teams side session indicating that he may be seen as having the potential to be a kicking-game specialist. King served as a core special teamer last year as a rookie. 

-- Rookie quarterback Jacoby Brissett spent one special-teams period working closely with assistant quarterbacks coach Jerry Schuplinski on the intricacies of the play-action fake. 

-- The Patriots video staff appeared to have a monitor set up on the sidelines of one of the practice fields. The team has experimented with different forms of video at practices over the years 

-- Michael Williams left the practice during an 11-on-11 period. He eventually got onto a cart and was driven off. 

-- Bryan Stork and Woodrow Hamilton got into an altercation following one play that resulted in a brief scrum involving several players. Both Stork and Hamilton were sent off the field to do some running. 

-- During one of the final special teams periods of the day, Brady and Chris Hogan spent some time working on the timing of their out-routes. 

-- After the practice, the entire team went to the hills below the practice fields for some conditioning work. 

7-ON-7

* Brady complete to White near the sideline. 
* Brady incomplete for Hogan on the sideline. Butler was tight in coverage. 
* Brady incomplete for Bennett. Chung broke up the pass. 
* Brady complete to Dobson over the middle.  

* Garoppolo complete to Washington deep down the right sideline.
* Garoppolo complete to Dobson underneath. 
* Garoppolo complete to Hogan. 

* Brissett incomplete for Lucien. Pass broken up by LeBlanc.
* Brissett incomplete for Hogan on back-shoulder throw. 
* Brissett complete to Scheu down the seam. Impressive laid-out catch by the rookie tight end.
* Brissett complete to Williams. 

11-ON-11 (with music to simulate crowd noise)

* Brady complete to Martin over the middle with Jones in coverage. 
* Brady complete to Martin short. 
* Brady incomplete for Bennett. Pass was deflected by Collins. 
* Brady complete to Dobson on scramble drill. (Play likely would have been a sack.)

* Garoppolo complete to Hogan near the sideline. 
* Garoppolo complete to Brown on a swing pass. 
* Garoppolo complete to Dobson with Roberts in coverage.
* Garoppolo complete to Brown near the sideline. Brown made a diving grab and appeared to keep his feet in bounds. 

* Brissett complete to Martin down the sideline. 
* Brissett complete to Harper on an out-route. 

* Brady incomplete for Martin. Pass broken up by Butler. 
* Brady complete to Bennett with Butler in coverage over the middle. 
* Brady complete to Hogan on a scramble drill. Hogan made a one-handed catch before getting out of bounds. 
* Brady complete to Harper over the middle. 
* Brady incomplete for White over the middle. 

* Garoppolo complete to Harper over the middle. 
* Garoppolo incomplete to Dobson. 
* Garoppolo incomplete to White on a screen. 
* Garoppolo complete to Bennett over the middle. 

* Brissett complete to Carter. 
* Brissett complete to Iosefa. 
* Brissett complete to Foster. 
* Brissett complete to Hogan on a scramble drill.
* Brissett complete to Foster. 
* Brissett complete to Harper. 

HURRY-UP 7-ON-7

* Brady complete to Bennett. Bennett looked fine. This was his first route after meeting with trainers about his left knee. 
* Brady complete to Develin. * Brady complete to Brown. 
* Brady complete to Brown. 
* Brady complete to Bennett. 
* Brady complete to Hogan. 
* Brady complete to Hogan. 

* Garoppolo complete to Martin. 
* Garoppolo complete to White. 
* Garoppolo incomplete to Martin. Ball bounced off of Martin's chest plate. 
* Garoppolo complete to Martin. 
* Garoppolo complete to Dobson. 
* Garoppolo intercepted by Jonathan Jones. Pass intended for Dobson. 

* Brissett complete to Iosefa. 
* Brissett complete to Carter down the sideline. 
* Brissett complete to Derby. 
* Brissett complete to Gaffney.

Watch Rob Gronkowski's wild intro as WrestleMania 36 host

Watch Rob Gronkowski's wild intro as WrestleMania 36 host

Rob Gronkowski may be done with football, but he continues to find ways to entertain us on our television screens.

The former New England Patriots tight end is hosting WrestleMania 36 this weekend alongside WWE star Mojo Rawley. And as one would expect, Gronk brought the energy to start off the two-night event.

“[WWE] picked the right guy [to host WrestleMania], because I know how to start a party on a Saturday night and end it 30 hours later," Gronk quipped in his introduction.

Watch below:

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Between the WWE and his various other ventures, Gronkowski seemingly has been everywhere these last few weeks. He appeared on SmackDown, was revealed as White Tiger in "The Masked Singer," and participated in a virtual beer pong tournament for coronavirus relief.

In other words, retirement seems to be treating the future Pro Football Hall of Famer well.

Stephon Gilmore seems to think covering new Bills WR Stefon Diggs will be 'light work'

Stephon Gilmore seems to think covering new Bills WR Stefon Diggs will be 'light work'

Does New England Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore think covering new Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs will be "light work?" 

It certainly seems that way. Gilmore defended Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Amari Cooper after former Bills and New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan called Cooper a "turd" on ESPN's "Get Up."

The 29-year-old called Cooper one of the "toughest receivers in the league to cover," but when a fan responded saying Diggs will be tougher, another fan said he'd be "light work" and Gilmore liked that tweet. 

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Will Diggs really be that difficult for the Defensive Player of the Year to handle? It's tough to say, but Diggs put up some impressive numbers with the Minnesota Vikings before being traded to the Bills.

Listen and subscribe to Phil Perry's Next Pats Podcast here: 

In five seasons with the Vikings, Diggs has 4,623 yards and 30 touchdowns -- he's had 1,000-plus yards receiving in back-to-back years and has never played a full 16-game season. On the other hand, Gilmore had six interceptions last season with two touchdowns, 44 solo tackles and a fumble recovery. 

With the Patriots and Bills set to meet at least twice next season, it'll be interesting to see how things shake out.