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New England Patriots Links 8/17/11 - Patriots Still Have $9.2M of Wiggle Room Under The Cap

Erik Scalavino tells us what happened at Tuesday's shells & shorts practice. Some veterans are hoping to get some game action in Tampa.

Who's Hot: Matthew Slater.  With injuries to Taylor Price and Julian Edelman leaving the wide receiver corps thin, the fourth-year man is having his best camp yet as a pass catcher.

Who's Not: Brian Hoyer. The backup QB is splitting time and second-series reps more frequently with rookie Ryan Mallett and has had a number of passes picked off the past couple of days during 7-on-7 and full team action.

Play of the Day: During the team period at the end of practice, quarterback Tom Brady found receiver Chad Ochocinco tearing toward the end zone down the right hash marks in the middle of the field. Ochocinco, a good 10 yards behind the nearest trailing defender, easily hauled in the perfect pass and completed the play for a score.

Christopher Price catches up with Andre Carter, who's starting to feel more at ease with his new team.

"I feel great. Every day is always a progression," said Carter. "The coaches have all been very open in terms of line of communication and vice versa, but besides that, I’m just taking it day-by-day."

"It took a minute when I first came in — the first week, I really hadn’t seen that many reps and I know the coaches were just trying to [get] me into the system. Now, like I said, it’s just a day-to-day process, and I’m just very grateful to have the opportunity to come here and work hard."

"I think when you play this game it’s always great to be multidimensional in any aspect, whether it’s stopping the run or getting after the passer," Carter said. "That’s something I always pride myself off of since I’ve played this sport."



  • Tom E. Curran reports the Patriots have $9.2 million worth of wiggle room under the salary cap.
  • Ian Rapoport talks about Tuesday's 'mentally focused' practice. Belichick threw more situations at the team like yesterday.
  • Mike Rodak offers his observations from Tuesday's practice. Tough day for the offense with Bodden, Meriweather and Chung pulling in interceptions.
  • Christopher Price posts some quick notes from camp. Nate Solder continues to get serious reps at left tackle with the starting offense.
  • Christopher Price reports Wes Welker and Deion Branch quietly been having a stellar camp.
  • Steve Silva sees the Patriots making progress as the team prepares for preseason game No. 2 against Tampa Bay tomorrow.
  • Mike Reiss notes Wes Welker and Chad Ochocinco were called upon to kick 34-yard field goals yesterday. Gostkowski's job is safe.
  • Tom E. Curran reports Bill Belichick says the rule change moving kickoffs up to the 35 is designed to eliminate the play.
  • Mark Farinella says even Devin McCourty is wondering what he can do for an encore.
  • Christopher Price focuses on the steadying influence of Sebastian Vollmer at right tackle under the tutelage of OL coach Dante Scarnecchia.
  • Shalise Manza Young reports the Patriots are not happy with what they have at the safety position.
  • Karen Guregian gets Rodney Harrison's thoughts on Brandon Meriweather, the safety position and how Bill Belichick is "a master" of manipulation.
  • Mike Reiss offers his first impressions of DE Andre Carter.
  • Ian Rapoport notes that for Andre Carter, football was the family business.
  • Tom E. Curran takes note of DE Andre Carter's strength against the ground attack as well as his pass-rushing ability.
  • Ian Rapoport notes Steve Maneri bulked up this offseason as he made the transformation from college tight end to NFL tackle.
  • Mike Reiss cleans out his Patriots notebook. Mallett may play more than Hoyer Thursday.
  • Mike Reiss answers his weekly reader mailbag. Which receivers will catch on?
  • ESPNBoston Report: Vince Wilfork got improper benefits at Miami.
  • Ian Rapoport reports on the University of Miami scandal that names Vince Wilfork as one of the recipients of impermissible benefits.
  • Monique Walker reports Wilfork was named in the Miami scandal.
  • Monique Walker Patriots Notebook: Belichick is at odds over new kickoff rule; Haynesworth is set to go to trial for a misdemeanor sexual abuse case in Washington D.C.; Patriots are $9.2M under the cap; This is the last week of public practices for the team; The O-linemen gathered for a group photo with the Madden Most Valuable Protectors Award.
  • Ian Rapoport Patriots Notebook: Stephen Gostkowski is already adjusting to the new kickoff rule; Belichick put his team through "a big week" of practice; Rob Gronkowski wants to build off his 2010 season, especially getting open in the red zone.