The New England Patriots hosted a practice for season ticket holders inside Gillette Stadium after the Patriots Hall of Fame induction ceremony for running back Kevin Faulk.
The Patriots reported 24,546 fans in attendance, a huge increase from the 21,781 that attended on Saturday.
Wide receiver Chris Hogan was not in attendance after injuring his shoulder on Sunday. Wide receivers Julian Edelman, Danny Amendola, and Keshawn Martin were also not present. These players represent the top four wide receivers on the depth chart. Wide receiver Nate Washington continues to watch practice from the sideline.
Running back Dion Lewis and tight end Clay Harbor were not present. Offensive linemen Jonathan Cooper, Tre Jackson, Bryan Stork, and Sebastian Vollmer were also absent.
Linebacker Jonathan Freeny was the lone defensive player not available. Defensive tackle Alan Branch, currently on the Non Football Injury list, was on the sideline, but did not participate.
Running back Donald Brown tweaked his hamstring.
Guard Josh Kline returned to action for the first time and took over the right guard spot. Kline split time with rookie Ted Karras, but Kline has a clear advantage. The top offensive line featured Nate Solder, Joe Thuney, David Andrews, Kline, and Marcus Cannon.
Patriots.com’s Andy Hart noted that Shaq Mason stayed with this first team grouping, even though he is not yet participating in the activities. This means that the door is open for Mason to compete with Kline, Karras, and Cooper (when he returns) for the right guard role.
Many beat writers say this was rookie quarterback Jacoby Brissett’s worst practice in a Patriots uniform. He went 16/34 on the day. For comparison, Tom Brady was 12/14 and Jimmy Garoppolo was 11/14 on the day.
Wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell made the most of the injuries ahead of him on the depth chart and has a second straight great day. He burned Darryl Roberts for a huge gain, according to ProJo’s Mark Daniels. Mitchell looks very comfortable on the field and could see an expanded role moving forward.
Defensive tackle Terrance Knighton played next to Malcom Brown for the second straight practice, ahead of Markus Kuhn. I wouldn’t be surprised if Knighton beat out Alan Branch for that #2 defensive tackle role. Rookie Vincent Valentine was the 5th tackle, behind Kuhn and Joe Vellano.
Hart made another note that the Patriots played Logan Ryan in the slot, with Justin Coleman and Cyrus Jones as the outside receivers, when they gave Malcolm Butler a break. Just an interesting formation.
Safety Brock Vereen broke up one pass and intercepted another in the span of three Brissett passes, per the Herald’s Jeff Howe.
The Patriots spent a good chunk of practice on various kicks and punts.
The returners were Cyrus Jones, V’Angelo Bentley, DeAndre Carter, and Chris Harper.