Patriots

Postcard from Patriots minicamp: Jamie Collins makes his presence felt

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Postcard from Patriots minicamp: Jamie Collins makes his presence felt

FOXBORO — Day 3 of Patriots minicamp began with players acknowledging that they aren’t the talk of the town in Boston at the moment. Julian Edelman wore a Bruins jersey (No. 13 borrowed from teammate Phillip Dorsett), and Dorsett, Dont’a Hightower and others wore spoked-B hats on their way out to the fields behind Gillette Stadium. 

The Bruins and Blues will play Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals tonight at TD Garden. There would have likely been several Patriots players at the game tonight, but Robert Kraft is hosting last year’s championship team to his home (including players no longer on the club) to hand out Super Bowl rings. Priorities. 

Here’s what we saw from the final day of Patriots minicamp practice... 

NOTABLE ABSENCES

Sony Michel remained a no-show on the practice fields behind Gillette for the third straight day. Damien Harris got plenty of work in Michel’s absence. 

Patrick Chung, Deatrich Wise, Yodny Cajuste and Demaryius Thomas remained out. They did not participate in practices this week. 

FAKE FOOTBALL, REAL NOTES

Early in the practice, N’Keal Harry and Jakobi Meyers got some 2-on-2 time with Tom Brady and Brian Hoyer. Josh McDaniels watched closely and played the role of defensive back, asking the receivers to react to his positioning and adjust their routes accordingly. Harry ran one a yard or two off of where Brady was targeting and the pass skipped away without Harry even being able to attempt to dive for it. When Harry ran the correct distance on his next route, McDaniels and Brady provided him some positive reinforcement. 

When the Patriots did 11-on-11 work with sound piped in, Brady launched his first pass deep for Julian Edelman. Jonathan Jones was right there in coverage and broke up the play. 

Maurice Harris finished off a strong week of work with a long reception from Brady that was the result of some trickery at the line of scrimmage soon after the snap. 

Duke Dawson got his hands on the football deep down the right sideline, breaking up an attempt from Brady to Phillip Dorsett. Dawson has been in the right place at the right time when targeted in competitive drills over the last two days of minicamp practice. 

Jamie Collins once again made his presence felt early on in competitive drills. Rushing off the edge, he read Brady and jumped to break up a pass at the line of scrimmage. In a passing-down role, Collins’ athleticism could be a weapon. 

Stephon Gilmore had one of the more impressive pass breakups of the afternoon in the red zone when Brady tried to hit Edelman. Gilmore left his man with the ball in the air to undercut the throw and bat it out of the back of the end zone. There’s no doubt who the most impressive defensive back has been during “passing camp” this week. Gilmore looks like he’s picked up from where he left off last year. 

Jakobi Meyers and Julian Edelman had drops in drills early in the practice. Matt LaCosse also had a Brady pass go through his hands in an 11-on-11 period later in the workout. 

In a continuation of what happened at times Wednesday, rookie quarterback Jarrett Stidham was the second passer up in team drills. He completed short throws to Rex Burkhead and Ryan Izzo but had consecutive inaccurate passes to fellow rookies N’Keal Harry and Damien Harris fall incomplete. His best pass of the afternoon came in the red zone when he hit Jakobi Meyers on a perfectly placed pass that led Meyers to open space in the back corner of the end zone. 

Brian Hoyer was the third quarterback on the field during team drills. His best throws came in the red zone as well. He hit Phillip Dorsett on a 50-50 ball with Joejuan Williams in coverage. He later his Braxton Berrios in the back of the end zone with coverage closing in.  

Check out Phil Perry's 53-man roster projection>>>>

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Tom Brady shuts down random Twitter user questioning his Madden rating

Tom Brady shuts down random Twitter user questioning his Madden rating

Twitter trolls, beware: Tom Brady reads the comments.

EA Sports published its player ratings for "Madden NFL 20" on Monday and gave the New England Patriots quarterback a 96 overall, second among all QBs behind Patrick Mahomes.

Some random guy on Twitter disagreed with this assessment, escalating his hot take to the point of declaring he could run faster than Brady.

Why do we care what "Matt Harrington" thinks of Brady's athleticism? We don't ... but the Patriots QB apparently does.

Here's Brady coming out of left field to put "Matt Harrington" in his place:

Game over, Matt.

Brady obviously is slow by NFL standards but recently ran a 40-yard dash in 5.17 seconds, which is faster than the glacial 5.28-second dash he ran at the 2000 NFL Combine.

It's also faster than the random Twitter troll can probably run, as this guy found out the hard way.

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Jonas Gray to the XFL? Ex-Patriots running back attends showcase

Jonas Gray to the XFL? Ex-Patriots running back attends showcase

The ultimate "one-hit wonder" in New England is intent on keeping his football career alive.

Former Patriots running back Jonas Gray joined a handful of NFL castoffs who participated in an XFL "Summer Showcase" workout this weekend in St. Louis.

Among those joining Gray for the new league's workout session were former No. 3 overall pick Trent Richardson, ex-Tennessee Titans quarterback Zach Mettenberger and tight end Clay Harbor, who played for the Patriots for part of 2016.

Gray latched on with the Patriots in 2014 and burst onto the scene in November, rushing for 201 yards and four touchdowns in a win over the Indianapolis Colts.

But the Notre Dame product fizzled out as fast as he arrived, tallying just 91 more total yards after that breakout game and getting released by New England the following September.

Gray, 29, hasn't played an NFL snap since 2015, but apparently has his sights set on the XFL, which is set to relaunch in 2020 after a failed first attempt in 2001.

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