Tom Brady still feels like he has to make the team every preseason.
"Well,'' Brady said Thursday afternoon, trying to figure out what [the retirement of Matt Light] meant but not sounding at all surprised about it, "Matt called me a while ago and told me what he was planning to do, and I've called him every week since then trying to talk him out of it. He had such a great year for us. But there was no way I was going to be able to talk him out of it. He'll be a tough player to replace. But, you know, every year in this game, there's a lot of change.''
"My wife [Gisele Bundchen] said to me, 'When I met you [in 2006], you said you wanted to play 10 more years. How come that number never goes down?' It's that I love the game. I love the game. I'm going to play until they tell me they don't want me anymore.''
"I just met with coach Belichick this morning,'' Brady said. "I still feel like I'm in my first year trying to prove myself. There's no entitlement around coach Belichick. I've got to be the best guy for him to keep playing me. When I'm not, someone else will play.''
"I’m 22, so the rookies are as old as me, but I guess I’m older," Carter said with a laugh. "I learned a lot (last year). Just how to be professional, the Patriot way, how to handle myself. The time with the practice squad helped me develop as a player and just as a man."
Carter is yet another in what has become a deep pool of young, pass-rushing linebackers on the roster. The former Central Arkansas product knew the Pats had him in their plans last December when the team chose to double his practice squad salary from $149,000 to $300,000 when he resisted the chance to move to another team. He was regarded as one of the leading players on the practice squad all season, but was never promoted to the active squad.
"There was no bitterness that I was unable to play," he said. "Bill’s a great coach, so whenever he says I’m ready, I’m ready. Obviously the pay raise shows that they’re interested in you. Whenever your boss gives you a raise, you’re going to feel good about yourself." "You have a lot of young, fresh legs running around out there, a lot of eagerness out there," he said. "We all want to prove ourselves and build on what some of the older guys did last year."
- Erik Scalavino catches up with the Patriots new coordinators, Josh McDaniels and Matt Patricia.
- Andy Hart and Paul Perillo debate which secondary receiver has the best chance of making the roster.
- Andy Hart notes Markell Carter looks to his sister when he needs powerful inspiration; Plus Saturday notes from minicamp.
- Erik Scalavino reports Marshall County High School principal and assistant football coach Keith Stacey recalls his memories of Dont'a Hightower.
- Andy Hart notes six Patriots' first-year players were happy to attend rookie mini-camp, since the lockout prevented them from taking place last year.
- Paul Perillo says Jake Bequette comes to NE with a pretty solid resume as a pass rusher, that was used in a variety of ways in college.
- Paul Perillo reports WR Jeremy Ebert thinks having a little QB experience helps him understand the game from a different perspective.
- Patriots Today - McDaniels in a coordinated effort. (2.57 min. video)
- Patriots Today - Bolden ready to get to work. (1.58 min. video)
- Patriots Today - Addai, rookie camp and more. (2.57 min. video)
- Patriots Today - Camp begins for Jones, Hightower. (3.19 min. video)
- Karen Guregian reports on the unique bond between Rob Gronkowski and his mom on Mothers' Day.
- Greg A. Bedard points out that with the Patriots, undrafted does not mean unwanted.
- Field Yates notes Matt Patricia isn't putting too much weight on his new job title, saying "It's just everyone trying to do their job."
- Mike Reiss reports Josh McDaniels is excited about his offense and the competition at wide receiver.
- Tom E. Curran reports one reason Josh McDaniels returned to New England is that he feels he still has a lot to learn.
- Mike Reiss notes Dont'a Hightower talked up his respect for "The Man" Pepper Johnson.
- Mark Daniels reports DE Markell Carter has gained weight with his offseason workouts.
- Mike Reiss wonders of undrafted free agent RB Brandon Bolden can pull a Green-Ellis and make the Patriots roster.
- Karen Guregian notes undrafted DT Marcus Forston is eyeing a fresh start as a pro.
- ESPNBoston posts a roundup of photos from the first day of the Patriots' rookie minicamp.
- Field Yates tells us what the media was allowed to watch of rookie minicamp Friday afternoon.
- Tom E. Curran gives some thoughts on what (little) he saw on the first day of rookie minicamp.
- Mark Farinella hears from the first-year players who never made the 53-man roster last year, why they appreciate being included in the rookie mini camp.
- Kevin McNamara Patriots Notebook: Rookie DE Justin Francis is close friends with Steve Belichick from when they were at Rutgers; UDFA TE Brad Herman wants to learn from Gronkowski and Hernandez; UDFA Marcus Forston is happy to get a chance to play with the Patriots.
- Peter King (SI) MMQB: Tom Brady shows no signs of slowing down in New England.
- Pete Prisco (CBS Sports) Breakout stars: Who will be this year's Rob Gronkowski? Patriots Nate Solder makes his list.
- John Clayton (ESPN) Top 10 position battles heading into training camp. Dont'a Hightower vs. Brandon Spikes makes the list.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Ochocinco expresses support for his "Dad," Roger Goodell.
James Walker (ESPN) AFC East coaching rankings and TE rankings.
- James Walker (ESPN) AFC East weekend mailbag.
- John Clayton (ESPN) Opportunity knocks at minicamp.
- Dan Pompei (Nat'l Football Post) Sunday Blitz: All the latest post-draft scuttlebutt.
- Danny Tuccitto (Football Outsiders) 2011 Adjusted Games Lost.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Head of officials union says union impasse has yet to be reached with NFL.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Saints grievance hearings coming on May 16, 30.
- Manish Mehta (NY Daily News) Mark Sanchez's turnovers come from 'poor decision-making', NY Jets QB coach Matt Cavanaugh says.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Absence of NFLPA looms over concussion lawsuits.
- Michael David Smith (ProFootballTalk) Ray Lucas: Painkiller addiction my problem, not the NFL's problem.