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Patriots training camp notebook: Specialists in the spotlight during first in-stadium practice

Related: Patriots training camp notebook: Jonnu Smith looks primed for a breakout year

NFL: JUL 31 New England Patriots Training Camp Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

It was the first time in over 500 days that fans were in attendance inside Gillette Stadium for anything New England Patriots-related. It was the lightest practice to date as the Patriots were wearing just helmets and sweats for a split-squad walkthrough. Cam Newton and Mac Jones both started for their respective teams as the Patriots geared up for their first pre-season game next Thursday night.


Absentees: CB Stephon Gilmore (PUP), DT Bryon Cowart (PUP), QB Jarrett Stidham (PUP), LB Chase Winovich (PUP), TE Dalton Keene (PUP), TE Devin Asiasi (Covid-19), LB Cameron McGrone (NFI), S Joshuah Bledsoe (NFI), OL Ted Karras (injured), LB Raekwon McMillan (injured), DL Christian Barmore, DL Akeem Spence, RB Devin Ross, CB DeAngelo Ross, K Nick Folk, S Adrian Colbert

Returnees: S Cody Davis


  • Tonight was all about preparing for a gamely environment. The two teams had a warmup period, the captains met at mid-field prior to opening kick and the two teams headed to their respective sidelines. It was not the most entertaining product, but tonight was all about the little things; getting the right players on the field on the fly and getting everyone to their assignments before snapping the ball. With one less pre-season game on the schedule this year, it was clear Belichick’s staff wanted to get the team at least one extra game day experience before they face off with Washington next Thursday night.
  • As for the quarterbacks, it was a light day for Jones and Newton after having an intense padded practice on Thursday. Both were split up on teams and each had a fair share of starters on their respective squads. The Patriots will have Saturday off before returning to the practice field on Sunday for a 3 pm padded session.
  • It was a night solely for the specialists. Although Nick Folk did not participate in the walkthrough tonight, he was present on the sidelines. Undrafted kicker Quinn Nordin got a lot of work going 8 for 8.
  • After leaving Tuesday’s session and returning on Wednesday and then missing Thursday, second rounder Christian Barmore was not present for tonight’s walkthrough. Sources say he is dealing with a blister on his foot and the Patriots are taking it slowly with the rookie.

That is all for today’s Training Camp Notebook. Make sure to follow @Ryan_Spags and @patspulpit on Twitter for all your training camp updates!