Patriots

Rookie N'Keal Harry following Julian Edelman's lead early in Patriots career

Rookie N'Keal Harry following Julian Edelman's lead early in Patriots career

FOXBORO -- It didn't take long for New England Patriots rookie wide receiver N'Keal Harry to stand out Thursday at OTAs.

The Arizona State product, who the Patriots selected No. 32 overall in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft, made five receptions during 11-on-11 drills at Gillette Stadium. He also hauled in multiple touchdown catches.

Harry is learning from all kinds of people as he gets acclimated to a new city, a new team and a new offense. One of the teammates he's leaning on is Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman, who also participated in Thursday's OTAs.

"Just following his lead," Harry said of Edelman. "Just seeing the types of things he does, seeing the way he prepares before practice, after practice. Those are going to be the biggest things. He's helped me a lot so far."

Edelman is an excellent route runner, and some of that has begun to rub off on Harry.

"Most definitely," Harry said. "I've seen myself improve on route-running already within the first three days, so I'm just going to keep listening to him and keep that same approach and that same mindset coming into practice every day."

Harry and Edelman were among the Patriots wideouts who practiced fielding punts, and while that part of the game is not new for the rookie, the unpredictable New England weather conditions make the job a little more difficult than it was at Arizona State.

"It’s definitely different than a place like Arizona just because it’s windy," Harry said. "But that’s just something that’s going to take repetition and take practice. I’m going to have to work on it every day.”

Harry's size (6-foot-2, 225 pounds), strength and ability to make tough catches in traffic could see him line up in a few different spots in the Patriots offense this season, and he's ready for all the roles the coaching staff could ask him to fill in 2019.

"I just want to do whatever I can to be successful and to help the team win," Harry said. "Whatever coach asks of me, I'll do it, whether that's on the inside, whether that's in the slot. If they want to put me in the backfield, it doesn't matter. I'll do whatever I need to do."

Observations from Thursday's Patriots OTAs>>>

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Tom Brady now the oldest active NFL player at 42 years old

Tom Brady now the oldest active NFL player at 42 years old

It's official. The oldest active player in the NFL is Tom Brady.

The New England Patriots quarterback, 42, officially took over the title from Indianapolis Colt kicker Adam Vinatieri. The former Patriot, 46, was placed on IR by the Colts on Monday after having surgery to repair a knee injury that had plagued him this season.

With Vinatieri on IR and his career possibly over, Brady could hold the mantle as the NFL's oldest players for the next few seasons. Of course, that would depend on his health and when he decides to retire, but the title should continue to be his to keep.

The only realistic threats to Brady's status as the NFL's oldest would be a comeback by Vinatieri or one by Matt Bryant, a 44-year-old kicker who started the season with the Atlanta Falcons before being cut. Neither seems very likely given the struggles the two veterans have endured this year.

Vinatieri made only 68 percent of his field goals and 78.6 percent of his extra points (both career lows) while Bryant made just 64.3 percent of his field goals.

The title of oldest active player may not mean a whole lot, but consider it a feather in the cap for Brady. He will certainly be proud of it as well, as this title aligns with his health and athletics company, TB12.

The next oldest active player in the league is Drew Brees. He will turn 41 in January.

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Bill Belichick responds to Bengals' videotaping allegations against Patriots

Bill Belichick responds to Bengals' videotaping allegations against Patriots

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick has responded to the Bengals' allegations of a Pats staffer videotaping the Cincinnati sideline during its Week 14 road game versus the Browns.

As NBC Sports Boston's own Tom E. Curran reported, Kraft Sports Productions was in the Cleveland press box producing content for Patriots.com's “Do Your Job” series. Belichick noted that in his Monday appearance on WEEI's "Ordway, Merloni & Fauria" and vehemently denied the team's involvement.

"Yeah, I heard about this and evidently this is the production people on the TV show that were there and I have absolutely nothing to do, we have absolutely nothing to do with anything that they produce or direct or shoot," Belichick said.

"I have never even seen any of their tapes of anything else. This is something that we 100 percent have zero involvement with. This is something that you'd have to talk to the production people about and what they were doing, or whatever it was. We have never seen anything that they've shot, other than what has come down on TV."

The NFL is investigating the situation, according to Bengals head coach Zac Taylor.

The Patriots (10-3) will visit the Bengals (1-12) in a Week 15 matchup on Sunday.

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