Jerry Thornton offers his confessions of a Patriots Training Camp-oholic.
I love this time of year. LOVE it. Patton said when he looked over a battlefield, "God help me, how I love it so." More than is healthy for me, I know. Because I realize of course that July and August isn’t real football. Hell, this early on it’s not even fake football. It’s 80-man rosters, receivers who’ll be in the CFL next month running routes for quarterbacks who’ll be working as mall cops. It’s undrafted linemen, as anonymous as doomed, red-shirted Star Trek crew members, running around pylons trying to earn a spot on the practice squad. So largely, it’s a waste of everybody’s time.
But it’s also so much more. It’s watching Brady, Moss, Welker, Faulk, Wilfork and some of the other greatest players ever wear a Pats uniform honing their craft. It’s watching the 57 rookies they drafted this year, learning their numbers, getting familiar with the way they run and the shape of their shoulder pads and seeing how they look. Above all, it’s Bill Belichick in a visor and gym shorts, walking between the practice fields spinning a whistle around his hand while Bon Jovi cranks on the speakers, a man in his element if ever there was one.
Consider this: How many opportunities in this life do you get to watch someone who is perhaps the greatest ever in his field, working at his artistry? Mozart didn’t write operas while 5,000 people sat in bleachers sucking back Vitamin Waters. Sixteenth-century Italy didn’t have cable showing "Hard Knocks: Michelangelo Sculpting David." Grandpa Albert didn’t scribble out formulae on the chalkboard on "Keeping Up With the Einsteins." Genius at work is a very rare thing and it’s not often you can witness it in person. But for Patriots fans, it’s just down Route 1.
Tom E. Curran notes Troy Brown believes the next defensive coordinator will actually be defensive coach Corwin Brown.
But on Tuesday, former Patriot Troy Brown (video above) said he believes the next defensive coordinator will actually be Corwin Brown.
Corwin, no relation to Troy, was brought aboard by Belichick back in January. He was initially listed as simply a defensive coach but is expected to work with the secondary. A former Patriot who was drafted the same year as Troy Brown (1993) Corwin Brown has also worked with the Jets and at the University of Virginia. He was defensive coordinator at Notre Dame before getting hired here.
Said Troy, "(Corwin) doesn't have the title of defensive coordinator yet but I think that will be coming around the corner. We'll see how things go at the beginning of the season but I would expect that to happen down the road."
- Andy Hart discusses the release of Shawn Crable.
- Patriots kick off Training Camp 2010 today.
- Andy Hart breaks down the one-man race for the punting job in the wake of the Chris Hanson era.
Mike Reiss offers the Training Camp schedule for day 1, and what to expect from Pats Camp coverage.
- Albert Breer reports how the Devin McCourty deal got done and says the most important thing was he wanted to report on time, before the first practice.
- Mike Reiss notes the trickle-down effect of the Crable cut.
- Christopher Price analyzes the release of Shawn Crable.
- Karen Guregian looks at the fallout from Shawn Crable's departure from the Pats.
- Ian Rapoport notes the Patriots' redemption starts today at Camp.
- Karen Guregian reports Vince Wilfork is just fine with the doubters. "The more people don't pay us no attention, that's even better."
- Mike Reiss Camp Countdown: Mankins and OL.
- Mike Reiss Camp Countdown: Managing Welker.
- Jeff Howe looks at the trio of Patriots' specialists, who have long since guaranteed themselves roster stability.
- Shalise Manza Young says now is the time to spot players who can get it done. The competition is wide open.
- Tom E. Curran asserts the Pats might have questions around their roster and weak spots to address. But Brady isn’t one of them.
- Robert Lee lists five questions surrounding the Patriots defense.
- Albert Breer looks at three key issues -- Wes Welker's health, locker room leadership and the team's younger players.
- Tom E. Curran talks about what the Patriots new identity will be.
- Christopher Price rates the roster, Training Camp edition - Part 7.
- Jeff Howe makes his pre-camp prediction of the Patriots' 53-man roster.
- Mike Reiss lists the Patriots roster by contract length.
- Shalise Manza Young offers the transcript of her weekly online chat.
- AP Younger Patriots hope to find leader as camp opens.
- Tom E. Curran notes Hall of Fame OL John Hannah says Logan Mankins' beef is probably not with the money... but respect. (1.35 min. video)
- Ron Borges makes sure we know the talent of those Super Bowl teams is gone and Belichick's genius left with those players.
- Tim Graham (ESPN) Mel Kiper audits AFC East.
- Andrew Brandt (Nat'l Football Post) Brady, Manning contract issues: Part II.
- Tim Graham (ESPN) How strong is your team's ownership?
Don Banks (SI) NFL Pre-Training Camp Power Rankings. Pats number 10.
- Sports Illustrated 25 most hated teams in sports history. 2007 Patriots no. 6. Two words: sour grapes.
- T.O.'s new role in Cincy. (Nat'l Football Post) Breaking down
- Jarrett Bell (USA Today) Super Bowl loss behind Colts, but what lies ahead of them?
- Mike Florio (Sporting News) Eight questionable NFL free-agent signings.