Mrs. B.'s Annual Training Camp Reports
July 28, 2006 (Morning Session: 9:00-10:30)
Good Morning Kids... Patriots Training Camp has officially started and Mrs. B is back on duty! First, some quick housekeeping stuff for those of you who are new or as a reminder to those that have forgotten. I'm just a fan, like all of you and never claim to be an expert on anything... I just hope to share my experiences with those you who aren't as fortunate as I am to be able to attend camp...
Here's the traditional disclaimer: Any reference to "my boy", "my man" etc. refer to Tedy B, although we all know that I'm not the REAL Mrs. Bruschi! Also, throughout the course of the reports I may reference seeing fellow fans at camp and many "inside" things may not seem clear to everyone... Since I have affiliations with a number of fans and groups, you may not "get it" but those involved will. I don't mean to do this to annoy or confuse people but the initial intention of the reports was to inform a small email list of fans and friends about the happenings at Bryant back in the day. At the request of others, I started posting on various message boards and other places and it spread like wildfire and has evolved into what it is today. However, I remain true to my initial style as it's what makes me most comfortable and it's who I am... So, skim over what you're not interested in and/or shoot me a line and I'll be happy to clarify anything for you. Fair Enough??
And now..... Let Mrs. B's Annual Training Camp Reports Begin!!
This morning's first practice took place under hazy skies and the predicted rain did not push the boys indoors and us to the Stadium bowl... (Thankfully, because they're likely breaking down the stage from last night's Bon Jovi concert and I'm not sure if they would allow us access anyway.) Speaking of last night, JBJ had this to say: "If only I could have the brains of Belichick, be as pretty as Brady, and have toughness of Bruschi..." then the crowd went wild so I never caught the rest! He mentioned that the team was in the house...kicking off Training Camp at the concert.
I was running late... (gasp) due to a pit-stop for film so the boys were already on the field when I arrived. Luckily I was able to grab my usual spot on the grass and avoid total meltdown... hehehe! Guys were in full pads and were doing positional drills for most of practice.
Here are the quick hits...(because.. YIKES, it's almost time to head back out for the afternoon session!)
*In addition to the expected MIA Puppies and Branch, most notably absent from the field were Troy Brown and Daniel Graham. Hopefully Troy's not hurt but perhaps he's on the Sr. Citizen plan and has been granted a bit of leeway in order to limit his time on the field.. ala Willie McGinest et.al.
*Gostkowski (3) nailed his fieldgoals (with great accuracy and height) during the positional drill portion of the practice. (Jon Condo (46) snapped in Lonie's absence.) Towards the end of practice during live portion, Gramatica (7) did the honors and nailed all of his much to the delight of the waiting fans on the hill.
* Tebucky Jones is back to his old number 34.
* Tedy and Beisel manned the middle with the first unit with Vrabel moving back outside. The Vrabel/Rosey combo sounds good to MrsB!
* During full squad work Brady hit Rache Caldwell down the sidelines causing the biggest crowd reaction of the morning. (Hobbs was in coverage.) Caldwell was clearly the outstanding receiver of the day... (Have we found our #2?!) Matt Light celebrated with Brady with a woot and high five!
* Tedy B and Tebucky both had INTs....
* Speaking of Tedy, he "welcomed" Maroney into the NFL in style with a huge crack! Vrabel laid a huge hit of his own but I was multi-tasking (ie... chatting) and missed seeing who was the lucky recipient.
*New dude, TE Walter Rasby was on the field wearing Fauria's old 88.
* Kevin Faulk returned punts today.
* I spent the morning session with Erdoboy Ed (no longer from Japan!), Cookie in College, and Chris (Bleed Blue) and spoke to Mike Reiss (thanks for the kind words, dude!) and Tom Curran for a bit.
I'm sure there's more but... Big Al is here and it's time to head back out... Mrs. B is not too keen on the double sessions coming so close together and prefers the morning/evening combo... but... It Is What It Is!
Luckily, the predicted rain held off and we enjoyed our second session on the hill... The crowd seemed to be half the size of the morning so there was more room to spread out. I hooked up with the Patriots Planet crew of Peg, Joephoto, Cookie, Bideau, and Ras (Sean.) Guys were in shorts, shoulder pads, and helmets for the afternoon.
Here are the pm tidbits:
* There were quite a bit of one on one drills going on in various sections of the main field throughout the practice.
* Troy was on the field looking fine but Matt Light was nowhere to be seen. He made some good catches but missed some that he would have made "in his day".
* The receivers earned the honors of running the first penalty lap, lead by Brady.
* New Dude, Keron Henry is wearing #1 but dropped most of what was thrown his way.
* Ty Warren earns the honors of getting into the first scuffle of camp with members of the OLine way in the back corner... (Mrs. B says: Yes... Bring the intensity on!!)
* Rache Caldwell still was a favorite target and after missing a ball that he thought he should have caught, hit the deck on his own to do some push-ups. (Nice attitude!!)
*Vrabel is still a is still a ball buster as always and got under Brady's skin after rushing him and taunting. Brady reciprocated with a shove.
*Dillon made a crowd cheering Catch and Run promptly followed up by one from Maroney.
*TBC clearly would have sacked Brady during the team portion.
* During one miscommunication, Brady missed Troy (and someone else) throwing it between them and was clearly pissed, yelling out a loud swear.
* Tedy is not wearing the elbow brace that he has for a couple of seasons.
* Corey strutted his stuff shirtless after both sessions heading off the field.
* The team ran quite a few sprints at the close of practice and BB called out certain guys and gave a list of where they screwed up (Mankins was one of them called out...) and had to run extra.
* Linebackers signed this afternoon, and Tedy especially, started way in the back and made his way all around staying 1/2 hour (or more) signing. (I was hoping to say hi and ventured down to the ropes.. (gasp!) but as he got closer, everyone crowded in so much I abandoned ship and headed up the hill.) FYI.. DB's signed in the morning for anyone interested.
Chatted a bit with Dan Pires, Buddylove, Promisedland, and Bryan Morey along with my fellow Planeteers.
That's it for now... It's 7:00 pm, I haven't eaten yet and haven't even started editing the sound seeing tour for the podcast yet. The entire day will likely be combined as there was no time to get it done between sessions. Show number will be 68. Check it out at www.patriotworld.com and also look for pictures that will be posted as soon as I can edit them and get them up.
Hey Kids... headed out with Big Al for Day 2. It was an 8:45-10:45 morning session and was a hot one...(just the way Mrs. B likes it!!) JoePhoto and Erdoboy arrived later to join us... Also talked to Mike from the Suites quite a bit.
Guys were in full uniform and took the same pattern as we've grown accustomed to... various drills taking place all over the field. Unfortunately, I forgot to put my contacts in so I could see lots of men in blue, white or red jerseys but details were sketchy!
Here are the quickies for today:
* No Troy Brown again this morning nor Graham, Watson, or Mills. (Rasby and Thomas were the only TE's out there.) Matt Light was back.
* It seems to me that they're using so much more of the far reaches of the fields than ever... hopefully it's just to preserve the grass and will be moving closer to the fans soon..
* During drills this morning, there was a new twist to the WR one... Many days the cones are set up in a square and guys catch balls on each side. Today there was a line of cones set at a diagonal and they ran through, cutting and catching balls in between.
* Tedy B laid another lick on Maroney again today during the team portion... leveling him, much to the delight of the crowd!
*Earlier, Maroney laid one of his own on Chad Brown who lost his helmet in the process.. Brown is now back to his former number 98 and Barry Gardner switched to 47 freeing it up.
*In other crowd pleaser, Klecko leveled Maroney, who coughed up the ball at the opposite end of the field as me.
*TE David Thomas (86) saw some action this morning during full squad work. Caldwell (87) still continues to impress.
* One of the big defensive dudes was escorted off the field by a trainer and although we didn't catch the number, by the process of elimination, it appeared to be Marquise Hill (91) who was limping.
*Heath Evans showed aggressiveness during 1:1 drills notably plowing over David Thomas.
*Mel Mitchell drew props from coaches for his play coming up agains Tebucky Jones in the same drill.
* Tight Ends and Running Backs signed after practice, and the walking wounded members of that crew joined in after working out with trainers.
* A mini stampede occurred after the official signing session ended when fans rushed the field surrounding Dillon and Maroney. Apparently Dillon was on the field with some kids (family members?) and people in the stands saw it and started rushing the field surrounding him for autographs. Spreading like wildfire... people on the grass followed suit and surrounded Maroney who looked bewildered. :-)
The second session for today is from 5:30-7:30 and I'll be there of course! However, we have plans for the evening so I may not have time to sneak a report out before landing in the dog house for being late.. hehehe! No fear though, it will be coming at some point!
The podcast for this morning's session will be #69.. which I will begin working on as soon as this report is posted and I can do a few things around the house.
Sorry for the delay folks... but Mrs. B does have a husband and a real life (believe it or not!) We attended last night's session accompanied by our son Jake and then had plans to go out. So, the update is coming to you on Sunday morning but I'll have today's up right after the afternoon practice. We headed over to our usual spot where Peg was already seated then Mike from the suites surprised us with passes to the VIP section so I could get a chance to say hi to Tedy and possibly take our annual training camp pic (without getting crushed by thousands at the ropes.)
Here's the real quickies as I wasn't able to get a podcast up yesterday and need to before heading out today...
*Guys were in shorts and shoulder pads as they were yesterday for the second session. Troy was back on the field as was Watson again but no sign of Matt Light.
* Right after the stretch, the sky opened up, the wind whipped up and we all got soaked but were treated to a huge double rainbow extending from the stadium to the far endzone of the practice field when it was over. The rain didn't bother the crowd as people started whooping it up... (Bring on the extreme weather!!)
* During drills Troy, Caldwell and Watson were the go-to guys... they were mostly dead on except for a few drops by Watson, drawing oooooohhhhs from the crowd.
* I believe I spotted former Pat Fred Baxter out on the field assisting (I know he and OTIS are in town as Big Al saw them out and about the other night.)
* The best drill of the night was one in which a LB and TE faced off against one another in blitz pickup with Todd Mortensen serving as the QB. There were a few good match-ups and the crowd was pleased to see the action heating up.. By far, the biggest contest involved a trio of duals between Tedy and Heath Evans... On the first one, Tedy blew by Heath in a flash. During the second, Heath got the better of Tedy and he ended up slipping to the ground.. On the way up he swatted the ball in the QB's hand and the crowd responded. Waiting for the next go-round, Tedy was getting fired up while waiting and began calling Heath on for the rubber match... They both lined up, Tedy flattened Heath, then hit the QB too, just for good measure (depite the red jersey!) The crowd went nuts and he began raising his arms calling for more... to which we noisily responded... Running over to the sidelines with Vrabel, he whipped off his helmet laughing like a big kid! Welcome Back to Camp, Tedy... we've missed you!!
* During the passing game Brady hit Caldwell for a TD right down the middle and Watson reinacted the sweet TE screen play that paid off so nicely in Atlanta!
* Asante Samuel was the star of the day as he picked off Cassel during a two minute drill and returned it to the house ...finishing off his TD by "dunking" the ball through the uprights... drawing huge cheers from the crowd.
* Defensive line signed after practice. Ellis Hobbs came over to sign as well, giving his shirt and gloves to kids in the crowd. Don Davis signed again and honestly seems to be one of the most pleasant people... clearly enjoying interacting with the kids... And speaking of DD... talk about an unbelievable physique... he's in impeccable shape.
*Alas... Tedy didn't end up signing at all and left field with a wave to the crowd so The Annual Training Camp Photo (and hug) will have to wait!
(Podcast will be combined with the morning session and will be #69... www.patriotworld.com)
Hey kids... most of this is probably posted elsewhere by now because I'm still playing catch-up but here goes the super mini-version:
Today was HOT (yippee!!) and very, very crowded at camp! We arrived the earliest we have thus far and the bleachers and most of the grass, and VIP area was fully packed by the time we got there. Luckily, there was enough room to squeeze beside Peg in my spot. Jake took off down the hill to take pictures and Big Al settled in beside me for the first time. We had lots of visitors as well: Laureen & Larry, Vincent from Montreal, Cookie, Pires and Erdoboy Ed.
Here are the tidbits for today:
*Players wore full pads under the blaring sun. Tedy Bruschi, Tom Brady were not around and likely had a veteran day off. I didn't see Rache Caldwell or Jarvis Green either. Troy Brown made his first appearance in pads as he's only participated in the second practice of the double sessions thus far.
*With Tom off the field, Cassel assumed the number 1 spot for the afternoon and seemed confident during his running 7:7 drills hitting most everyone most notably TE David Thomas (86), Troy Brown, Kevin Faulk, John Stone (14), Ben Watson,
* The "most intense" award today goes to RB Laurence Maroney and LB Corey Mays who faced off on the blitz pick-up drills... Both kept the intensity going by refusing to quit even when locked together, finally both falling to the ground. Maroney lost his helmet in the process and it looked like punches were going to be thrown when they got up but daps were exchanged instead showing mutual respect. The crowd went wild!
*Corey turned up the heat today plowing through everyone.. up the middle and along the sidelines.. He had his strut going and the fans ate it up...
* Stephen Neal took the first solo lap that I've seen thusfar...
* TBC was beaten badly by Watson... and looked like he was dogging it... :-(
* Guys did sprints at the end of practice. (Ellis Hobbs and James Sanders stayed late to do some extra running on their own.)
* Special Teams and Quarter Backs signed today and a few extra players signed but not many... Don Davis continues to be a post-practice crowd pleaser coming over daily to sign with a smile. Brad Seely was beckoned by the crowd and signed some as well.
I'm running sooooo behind in everything (and tomorrow is another double session... ) so look for Podcast #70 to be up as soon as I can get to it. www.patriotworld.com
Hey guys... Just got back in from the short morning session. I was a bit off kilter as I forgot my mic and had to revert back to my old school recording equipment... This will be a super short Cliff Notes version as today is the dreaded "barely enough hours to get home and back in between sessions day. "
* Guys were in full pads as they have been each morning. No Tom again today, Tedy and Rache who missed yesterday were back.. I didn't see Matt Light or Jarvis Green this morning.
* Lonie is off PUP and was out on the field looking trim.
* Lost of running game work.... with Cassel at the helm.
* Maroney is the REAL Deal, really becoming a go-to guy in the team portion, up the middle and to the sidelines. He also received props and atta-boys from vets Larry Izzo and Monty Beisel after return work.
* Gramatica was on duty for much of the live portion... sending a sideline kickoff out of bounds and pulling a field goal wide right... (Mrs. B will be one nervous girl this fall... waiting to exhale only after hearing It's Goooooood because she'll be holding her breath the whole time...) :-(
* Catch of the Day: Cassel pass to a Caldwell diving across the middle under double coverage...
*Vrabel got a pick and took it to the house.
* Sealy was very vocal (as always) during morning tackle work with ST players.. specifically giving guys encouragement on following through on tackles... I heard TBC's name more than once; possibly the result of yesterday's episode of dogging it.. Don Davis stood out as being aggressive..
* O-Line signed today.. but lots of WR did as well. Also heading over there was Vrabel.
* There was a little dude around 3 years old sitting next to me with a red and blue mohawk!
* Mrs. B wishes that she remembered not only to bring her microphone but a notepad as well.... sorry guys!
Today's Soundseeing Tour will be combined with the evening session and will be Podcast Show #71. www.patriotworld.com
Hey kids... Sorry for the delay again but the MommyCab got called into service... Jake started football practice tonight so no sooner did I walk in the door from camp that I had to turn right around.... (We're not even going to talk about the foul mood I was in when I saw the mess that the kids left for me either... grrrrr!)
So, better late than never... This afternoon was a hot one for sure! Everyone who knows me knows that I love the HHH weather and it's a good thing because more is on the way... Heat, I can take.. it's the sore cheeks from spending all those hours on the hill that's starting to get to me!
Here's the tidbits for today:
* The boys were in shorts for the second session. Tom Brady missed his 3rd consecutive practice. Tedy wasn't there again this afternoon but Troy was. Matt Light was also on the field.
* New dude, WR Kelvin Kight is wearing #2.
* During drills, Wide Receivers looked "awfully cute" (hehehehe!) hopping and skipping after an initial burst of speed. Special Teamers worked in the left field downing punts and swatting them away to prevent them from going into the endzone. Maroney and Tebucky Jones caught my eye.
* Rache Caldwell best stay healthy as he's clearly the best that we've got (in camp) right now! He was the only light during a long stretch of incomplete passes to wideouts today by Cassel.
*Watson stood out, making some difficult grabs and protecting the ball well.
*Maroney caught an over the shoulder punt right at the goal line, dragged his feet and tossed it back where it was downed.. (sorry ...missed by whom!)
*There was a stretch where the DBs had quite a few diving blocks.. most notably Ellis Hobbs in the Endzone where he proceeded to celebrate quite vocally.
*There were some blown coverages however, as Troy literally stood in the Endzone and caught a pass near the goalpost with nobody even close to him. Watson also found himself alone along the sidelines.
*Wesley Britt (65) took another lap.
*There were quite a few sprints at the end of the practice but Wilfork, Caldwell and Samuel were on the side doing Core work with a trainer instead. Between all the doubles in a row and the conditioning running, it appears that this camp is very different than in the past...
*Waterboy's newest ditty: "Ice cold Gatorade... It's no Baloney.. It'll have you running... Like Laurence Maroney!"
*Hobbs and Sanders both ran extra after practice again.
*O-Line signed today... (and did this morning with WR, but it appears that this morning's was an extra as they all went directly to the handicapped section.) Josh Miller came over to sign a few after hearing "You promised!" from someone in the crowd. Cory Bramlet signed quite a bit as well.
(Sorry that things aren't that precise.. I'm trying to find names on my recording but it's late and taking forever so this will have to do.)
This morning's session was by far the lightest crowd and one of the most comfortable on the hill for me... Although muggy, it was overcast and not too hot and I was able to spread out. I expected the boys to be in shorts because of tonight's in stadium practice but I was surprised to find that they were dressed in full gear.
Here are the quickies for today... I'm behind on podcasting and hope to get yesterday's show up this afternoon.
* Tom Brady was back on the field after missing 3 straight practices but Tedy was absent missing 3 out of the last 4. Troy was off again today.
*Coming off PUP were Chad Jackson (17) and Bam Childress 13.
* Ellis Hobbs and Artrell Hawkins got down to the Sugar Hill Gang during the stretch today...hehehe!
* Lots of drills today... and running game work down in the opposite end of the field from me.
* Defense came up big in Red Zone work towards the end of the practice hooting and hollering as they continued to stop the running game. Freddie Roach (48) made a big stop holding Maroney out of the end zone.
*It was Gostkowski's turn on the main field today both for kick-offs and field goals. He hit all of them and he didn't disappoint the kids waiting on the hill to catch them.
* DB's signed today and anyone looking for an autograph came up big as there was plenty of room at the ropes.
* Maroney also came over and was quite impressed when Erdoboy asked him to sign his jersey.. and gladly obliged... yippee, Ed!!
* Slow news day... so here's the Mrs. B Fashion Update thus far: Today was Pro-Bowl Bruschi, following Throwback Bruschi, Superbowl 38 Bruschi, Silver Bruschi and White Bruschi... hmmmm.. what will tomorrow bring? One can only venture a guess.. but here's a hint... It'll be a Bruschi!
Today's Soundseeing Tour will be combined with tonight's practice and will be Show #72. www.patriotworld.com
Mrs. B was "Officially Off-Duty" tonight at the stadium because there will be plenty of reports from the many fans that were there, so I gave myself permission to just kick back and watch... (especially since I once again forgot to put my contacts back in when I took them out to work at the computer all afternoon!)
However, some of the things that I did notice were:
*As always, John Rook announced each period and described what would be happening on the field and the purpose of the drill/activity.
* Tedy was nowhere to be seen, once again :-( (I thought for sure that he would have been there tonight... hope that he's ok!) I didn't notice Asante Samuel out there tonight
* Mrs. B was wrong when she predicted shorts this morning and pads tonight... guys were in shorts, shells, and helmets.
* Both O-T-I-S and Fred Baxter were on the sidelines helping out.
* Jon Stone made a sweet diving grab across the middle then came up gimpy and was worked on by trainers in front of us for the rest of the night. Chad Brown also had quite a bit of stretch work done as well.
* Rache Caldwell caught just about everything sent his way.
* Kevin Faulk was on fire as well.
* Rookie TE David Thomas dropped an easy one in which he was uncovered.
* Matt Cassel's 2 minute drive once again stalled... thanks to a miss in the EZ by Keron Henry.
* We finally saw a successful 2 minute drill concluding in a TD!!! Yippee!! After several complete passes to Brown, Faulk and Watson, it concluded with a Brady to Brown TD the along the sidelines in the North Endzone (right in front of us.. :-) Major celebration ensued between the two and the OLine, led by Matt Light joined in with the atta-boys as well.
*Lonie's ink has extended past his elbow to his wrist and Koppen (who was on the sidelines in street clothes) appears to be trying to catch up...hehehe!
*Linebackers signed after practice which surprised me since they haven't had anyone signing on ST Night in the past.
* Mrs. B needs to wipe up the puddle that is forming at her feet because she jumped right in the pool when she got home... and is dripping all over the floor!
See you tomorrow guys... (unless there is a change in plans and a surprise day off due to the heat)
The Soundseeing Tour will be part of Podcast #72. www.patriotworld.com
Just got in from a hot one... and barely had enough time to get the clothes off the line before the Thunderstorm rolled in!
I thought for sure they would have canceled practice but instead did move it from 2:30 up to a 3:00 start time. Mea-culpa... Mrs. B forgot to put her contacts in again...
* There were only about 100 or so die-hards (read: crazy) fans like me there scattered on the hill and in the bleachers.
* Guys wore shorts, helmets and shells for the afternoon.
* The anticipated return of Richard Seymour has not taken place yet... Also, I didn't see Beisel or Asante out there for the second practice in a row. (The usual "regulars" who haven't been there were still absent.)
* Apparently, Stone's tightening up last night was a non-issue as he was out there today.
* It was an "on" session for on-again-off-again Brown and Light.
* Things were mellow today.... and I could have taken a nap there on the hill..hehehe!
* Did some full squad, situational and goal line work. Catch of the Day: Brady hit Rache Caldwell in the EZ under coverage by Vernell Brown. Brown came up big across the middle as well.
* Willie Andrews is a tiny, quick dude especially doing Kick Return duty.
* Back-up QB Todd Mortensen took some reps today with the second team hitting Rich Musinski but bouncing one off the hands of Kevin Faulk.
* At the end of practice, the entire squad did lots of windsprints... (even in the heat!)
* Those that dared to brave the heat were treated to some quality autograph time as just about everyone who was there went home with something. Running Backs and and Tight Ends were assigned to sign but many others including BILL BELICHICK signed for fans and exchanged a few words.
*Mrs. B said goodbye to Erdoboy Ed who enjoyed his first ever week of training camp experiences!
Podcast will be Show #73. www.patriotworld.com
Only have a couple of minutes before taking Jacob paintballing and there wasn't much happening that hasn't already been said, I'm sure... But for those of you who don't read anything else and rely on me for your info, here's the quick scoops for today:
* Practice took place in Gillette Stadium in full pads although it was at a walkthrough pace.
* Zebras were on the field.
* Lots of Kick Return and Punt Return work... If Willie Andrews earns a spot on this squad it will be for his return duties.
*Noticing a high snap, I just knew it couldn't be Lonie.. and was correct... Jon Condo was responsible.
* Midway through practice Seymour, Graham, Brown, Graham, Green, Hill and others joined in wearing numbers but shorts and no pads. Guys like Koppen and Kaczur were still in street clothes and didn't participate although came out to the field.
*Most of the morning was spent running through plays with the offense and defense working separately.
* Defensive Line signed...
*Happy Birthday Tom Brady could be heard from the ladies in the crowd...
* Nice to meet Gary and his Dad from the Bosco list.. and Mike joined me as well. (It's a Pink Bruschi Day today for those keeping tabs on the Mrs. B Fashion Update...hehehe!)
Just got in from this afternoon's session... Another hot one; what else is new?! Guys were in full gear and had a physical practice unlike the walk through this morning.
Short for time so here goes:
*None of the PUPs like Seymour, Graham etc. who were on the field doing the walkthrough this morning were there tonight.
*Asante was back on the field tonight and Dillon missed his first practice. (Mrs. B is waiting for Vrabel to have a Vet Day off... it must be coming soon.)
* In his first night back, Asante picked off a long Brady pass intended for Jon Stone...
* Lots of situation football with pads cracking!
* Troy Brown was in TOP form this afternoon, snagging everything thrown his way, with an exceptional catch diving for a Brady bomb.
* Ben Watson struggled, dropping a couple, most notably when one bounced off the numbers while he was wide open.
* Speaking of Ben, Vrabel was all over him today... robbing him of a catch by cutting in front of him to deflect a pass and also by pummeling him in the blitz drill.
*Maroney and Mays met up again in the same drill, turned it up and ended with friendly butt slaps... keeping their competition alive.
* Gene Mruczkowski ran a lap after the officials whistles stopped the play.
* Chad Brown left the field with a trainer.
* Guys ran windsprints at the end of practice, which ended a bit early, at 4:00.
* It was once again like the Dog Days of Bryant with plenty of room at the ropes for autographs and player interaction...
* Special Teams and QBs were assigned to sign and stayed well past the required time... Many others did as well, including Vrabel, Davis, Maroney, Andrews and Spann.
* Mrs. B got a chance to say hi to Lonie and was also recognized by a fan due to the Fashion Update from earlier today... hehehe!
I've had a major technical snafu and am behind in the podcasts.. The plan is to get two done tonight... Wish me luck! The Soundseeing tour for today's practices will be Show #75. www.patriotworld.com
Initially, there were two practices scheduled for today but BB changed it to a single afternoon practice instead.. which was A-OK with me! (It was nice to be able to run, get a workout in, go to BJ's and clean my house!)
* Crowds were back to normal capacity, both in the bleachers and on the hill. The humidity was gone but the sun seemed hotter to me today and I was more uncomfortable.
* Guys were in shorts, shoulder pads and helmets. No sign of Beisel, C. Brown, Mitchell, Hawkins and Chad Jackson in addition to the usual crew that I've been reporting on all along.
*Lots of ground game work down the other end.
*Catches of the Day: (a) Rasby, salvaging a bad Cassel pass and hauling it in with one hand. (b) Brady to Watson, who jumped up in the air and caught the ball, falling to his butt, covered tight by Willie Andrews (38) although... Andrews looked like a peanut next to him!
* Not a lot of other positives in today's offense (drops, overthrows) ... yikes! Off day, for sure..
*Brady is still wearing a knee brace.. and he and Dillon opted for the calf length sweats rather than the team shorts.
* Troy Brown still continues to look like one of the best things out there. The next best thing is Caldwell, followed by Watson.
*During drills, lots of fumble recovery work.. which continued with some simulated botched snaps at the line FG attempts.
*Gostkowski and Gramatica both hit all of their field goals, delighting the waiting kids on the hill and causing their teammates to cheer.
*Practice ended a little early but the boys ran quite a few windsprints again today... BB reminded them that it's tough but it's got to be done... (Toughening up!)
* Lots of signees today... WR and OL both signed (in addition to random players) so I'm not sure who was actually assigned. (Even Dante obliged when called over but the fans.)
(*MrsB/ Blue Bruschi Day... with SB 39 visor.)
Watch for the soundseeing tour as part of Podcast 76, coming this weekend! www.patriotworld.com
It felt great to be back after a nice productive weekend... Spent the afternoon with Chris (Bleedblue) and his mom. Not much to report but here's the tidbits for today:
*Guys were in full uniform and took to the field under hazy skies.
* Biggest news... Rodney Harrison, Richard Seymour, Dan Koppen, Randall Gay and Johnathan Sullivan were back... fully participating. I believe that Daniel Graham was also practicing but was wearing a red no-contact jersey out there (couldn't see the number but I'm going by process of elimination.)
* Did not see Chad Jackson...again, but Beisel was back.
* Today's session was dedicated to preparing for the upcoming game and many players work pinneys with numbers of opposing players throughout the day. The Defense took their turn against "Atlanta Offense" then our Offense went up against "Atlanta D." At times, the pace was just a bit about walkthrough.
* Fans were very vocal and happy to see Rodney back... one yelling "Pop Em, Rodney!!"
* Brady, going deep, connected with Stone who was being covered by Antwan Spann (but Stone later came up lame and worked with trainers on the sidelines.)
* Rache Caldwell is making it easy to begin to forget that other 87!
* Troy missed a tough ball across the middle but made quite a few deep catches riling up the crowd.
* There were many, many sprints run today... The entire squad lined up with their hand down waiting for the whistle and came out fast out of the blocks... This is the most running I've ever seen at camp in all of my years... Good!... New attitude for a new season, says Mrs.B!!
*DB's signed today.. with Rodney getting the biggest cheers, naturally!
Watch for podcast show # 77 coming tonight or early tomorrow morning. www.patriotworld.com
I headed out to camp having just gotten 3 hours sleep so I was thankful to be joined by Mike to keep me company and from snoozing on the hill! I also forgot my pad on the table so I'm going strictly by memory here.. (and will likely remember more after I hit SEND...hehehe)
* Guys were in full pads and were stretching out when I got there (a little late.)
* Koppen, Graham (still in red no-contact jersey) , Harrison, Sullivan, and Seymour were all out there practicing again today. I didn't see Troy Brown who may be on his typical 1 a day schedule... Chad Jackson was still nowhere to be seen...
* During downtime, Graham, Koppen and Harrison could all be seen running gassers on the left field.
* Once again, tons of scout stuff going on for guys on both sides of the ball.
* Sullivan moved into the nose position with the second unit.
* Newbie Kelvin Kight (2) made quite a few nice grabs under double coverage.
* Caldwell continues to impress making several nice grabs throughout the day.
* Practice ran a bit long despite not running at the end. Linebackers signed today ...as well as Bill Belichick!
That's all I can remember off the top of my head.. Everything else is on the podcast... Watch for show #78 which will be combined with tonight's session if it's not too big. www.patriotworld.com
Gotta be quick... heading out the door to grab some Mexican for dinner... :-)
* Guys were in shorts, shoulder pads and helmets.
* Troy was back on the field which was not surprising.
* Lots of game simulation work again this afternoon... same set up as the morning.
* BB's iTunes were blaring through the place creating lots of noise for the players to overcome. It also served to quicken the pace and give them a sense of urgency... made for some of the more exciting football yet in camp.
* New dude, WR Eddie Berlin was wearing #81.
* Caldwell still looked hot.. as did Watson and #2 Kelvin Kight.
* The offense had it all over the D during Brady's 2 minute hurry-up drill with completions to Troy, Watson (double teamed) and an awesome aerial catch by Caldwell. The final pass bounced off the back of Faulks hands. Brady spiked it with 4 seconds remaining giving them enough time to set up for a FG (which they did not do at that point, rather reset the clock and put Cassel at the helm.)
*Please God... Protect Tom Brady and keep him healthy!!!! Cassel's got those happy feet and hesitation that scares me to death.... That's all I need to say about that!
*Vernell Brown and Chad Scott made some nice defensive plays out there breaking up passes... Scott's even garnered a nice pat on the back from BB.
* Hank Poteat picked off Corey Bramlet.
* Tackle Ryan O'Callahan took a lap.
* Running Backs and Tight Ends signed this afternoon.
* The Hay (grass) on the hill is so burnt that it's getting really slick.. (be careful folks) and my butt kept sliding down... However, I had my laugh of the day when I watched a boy put an empty popcorn bucket on each foot and ski down the hill... Gotta love it!!
* More details in tonight's podcast.. but my stomach is growling and that's all can recall off the top of my head.
See you for Session 16 tomorrow AM... Podcast for today will be #78... www. patriotworld.com
Just got in from the morning session and guys were in shorts, shoulder pads and helmets. It was the coolest day of camp thus far and very comfortable. I hung out with fellow Planeteer, Bideau who watched with me on the hill. Not much to report as it was total game prep for Atlanta again this session.
* Practice consisted of situational scout work again, alternating between simulating Atlanta's Offense and Defense. Some players wore pinneys containing the jersey numbers of key Atlanta players.
* Rodney hung with Artrell Hawkins during the stretch then later sat talking to Belichick for awhile during light drill time.
* Jarvis Green practiced today as did TE Garrett Mills, whom I missed yesterday. Still no return of Chad Jackson.
* Rache did some self-imposed push-ups for missing a catch in a drill.
* Brady hit Rache many times today, most notably for a long bomb to the corner of the endzone.
* Quite a few INTs and deflections today... Chad Scott (30), Gus Scott (29), etc...but the Grab of the Day was Assante Samuels aerial pick of a Cassel pass, gaining approval from the crowd.
* There was a lot of focus on the kicking game and quite a few field goals at the end of practice. Gramatica missed two in a row, sending one far right and one far left.
* Defensive line signed along with regulars, Brady, Vrabel, etc.
* Slow news day fashion update: Brady and Rodney sported the "Man Capris" while Mrs. B was back to the Superbowl 38 Bruschi.
* Word is out by now that BB confirmed Tedy's broken wrist thus won't be seen for rest of preseason. Mrs. B's Annual Training Camp Photo with Tedy tradition will sadly come to an end.
* Quite a nice stretch before the next session tonight at 5:30, so I'm heading out for a run... finally!
This soundseeing tour will be podcast #80. www.patriotworld.com
Just got in from the final practice of the week and last practice before the Atlanta pre-season game on Friday. Because of the Revs game tonight, we got to park in the West Suite lot which cut out some walking and avoided having to enter via P1 and snake up the hill.
* Guys were in shorts, helmets and shells... dressed for a walkthrough practice pace.
* Once again, scout work took place with players donning pinneys bearing ATL players Abraham, Milloy, Hall, and Hartwell etc.
* During beginning drills, the Special Teamers were catching passes... or shall I say trying to.... Best to stick to the kicking game, boys.
*After that drill, Josh Miller and Gostkowski thrilled 4 lucky fans by tossing footballs into the crowd as souvenirs.
* Brady didn't do much tonight, giving the nod to Cassel for most of the reps. Instead he spent a bit of time having a heart to heart with Mr. Kraft on the sidelines.
* Cassel connected well with Rasby (88), Henry (1), and Kight (2) and looked better this evening than this morning.
* Mr. Kraft signed quite a few autographs near the media shoot much to the delight of the fans.
* Erik Alexander (49), Freddie Roach (48), Hank Poteat (32), and Willie Andrews (38) all had picks tonight.
* Lots of time was spent on punt returns with V. Brown, Poteat, Andrews and Childress taking the reps.
*Practice ended at 7:00 with the Annual Rookie Slip-n-Slide taking place in the far corner of the opposite field. Later, the sopping wet, muddy (and sometimes shoeless) Rookies signed autographs for the fans. Maroney is clearly a fan favorite and always gets a huge ovation.
* Slow News Day Fashion Update: Eric Alexander opted for the Man Capris tonight while Vrabel donned the big, baggy sweat pant look. Of course, Mr. Kraft was out there in his country club white pants... (When you're the owner of the team, you can wear whatever the heck you want!)
See you all on Monday... Mrs. B will be catching up on podcasts, editing and posting pictures on the website, and spending time enjoying her Real Life!
The soundseeing tour for this session will either be part of #80 or #81 if they run too long. www.patriotworld.com
Hey Kids... Mrs. B's back in action after a 4 day hiatus! (Of course, catching up on the podcasts still took place over the weekend but not making the treks to and from camp was a nice break. I just got home and Jake was logged in on MY computer in the middle of yet another Fantasy draft so I'm playing catch up here...
Here's today's quickies:
* Guys were in full pads today and the only fashion emergency out there today was Mr. Kraft in his signature white pants...hehehe!
* Former PUPpies Seymour, Harrison, Koppen were nowhere to be seen... Of course the mystery guest #17 (Chad Jackson) was still not back on the field nor the usual MIAs.
* Despite message board reports that mentioned injuries to Dylan and Tebucky Jones, they both practiced. Kevin Faulk (I believe, just based on my own process of elimination) was out there wearing a red no-contact jersey.
* Lots of running game work today... Pepper ranked on someone lined up opposite TBC... I think it looked like 99 Mike Wright...Pepper could be heard barking at him Big Time! Jonathan Sullivan also got reamed by BB...
* Willie Andrews, Kevin Faulk, Vernell Brown and Hank Poteat were used at Punt Returners again today.
* Bon Jovi was on the sidelines today, first talking to BB, then Kraft and Pioli and a lady on the side of Al happened to be wearing a Philly Soul shirt and he spotted her. He came right over, took a picture with her and made her day! Later, Light and Neal took pictures with the boy that was with him.
* I spent the practice with Rick, a fan from Tulsa who was up for the Sox, TC and the game on Saturday... who thanked me for the reports on KFFL and the podcasts :-) I also met Patschick from patsfans.com and Chris (Bleedblue) and his dad from nefans.com came by too.
* Receivers signed today as well as the usual extras Brady, Maroney, etc.
Just got word that the practice time for tomorrow's session has been changed to 4:30-6:30 so I'm off until then which may give me some time to get started in my classroom before vaca.
Listen to the sounds of today's camp on Podcast #82. www.patriotworld.com
Just got in from today's single session and there's not much to report. (I'm soooo playing catch-up due to my technical woes here that it's just as well...)
* Guys wore shorts, shoulder pads and helmets.
* The VIP section was packed and spilled over on to the hill on the other side of the stands.
* Pace was slow and lots of scout work was done to prepare for Arizona. Some of the players being represented by scout jerseys were Edwards (83), Wilson (24), Boldin (81)...
* Ex-PUPpies and Atlanta scratches Seymour, Koppen, Harrison were back on the field tonight and Rodney spent a good deal of time involved in the plays.
* Faulk was back in his regular jersey shedding the red no-contact jersey that he wore yesterday.
* Ben Watson stood out during drills connecting with Brady all night.
* Catch of the Night: Long bomb from Brady to Caldwell at the post being covered by newbie Gemara Williams (42).
* Light and Mankins took a lap together form a false start.
* While the punt team was on the main field, Brady did some one on one screen work with Maroney and Dillon in the left field.
* Erik Davis did some self prescribed pushups during the Square Drill.
* The boys have taken to woooo-ing and chanting as the competition between Gostkowski and Gramatica heats up at camp and were boisterous as each lined up... Both took 4 attempts at the end of practice and it looked to me that Gramatica hit all 4 of his but Gostkowski missed one of his, however it was so close that I could be wrong as others say it looked good from their vantage...
* Fashion Update: Rookies were supporting Chrome Domes... so either they've been allowed to completely shave off the "creative haircuts" or the Cue-Ball was the signature coif of the Class of 2006. Corey Mays was also allowed to keep his dreads like our #1 pick Maroney. Favoring Man Capris for the evening were Tebucky, Graham, and Lonie.
* DBs signed, along with Brady, Vrabel, Maroney and others... Many fans walked away happy as the depth was single file at the ropes.
Tomorrow is a double and I'll be there... Check out the sounds of this session on Podcast #83. www.patriotworld.com
This was the final morning practice of this year's training camp and it was nice and sunny and getting hotter! (Yes... Mrs. B likes HHH!) I'll be squeezing in some much needed Real Life stuff between sessions so here are the minimal tidbits for today:
* Practice took place in full pads and many of the vets weren't on the field today... No Brady, Brown, Seymour, Harrison, Miller, or Gramatica in addition to the usual MIAs.
* Scout work for Arizona continued today with emphasis on the running game once again.
* Catch of the Day: While working on scout, Willie Andrews (38) had a nice grab of a Cassel bomb close to the opposite endzone.
* Johnathan Sullivan took a lap as well as Eddie Freeman and then the entire Defense a bit later.
* Vrabel has clearly emerged as a major leader on the Defense....
* Gostkowski missed a couple of field goals pulling them far right (one looked like it was even outside of the net) but I couldn't judge the distance based on where I was sitting.
* Patrick Cobbs (41) is one to watch :-)
* Eugene Wilson ran some gassers on his own during downtimes.
* Linebackers signed after practice as well as Lonie, Cassel, Maroney.
* I made friends with a nice family today who kept me company on the hill :-)
I'll be back tonight for the final Evening Session and then again tomorrow for the last session of camp!
Listen to the sounds of this session on Podcast Show #84. www.patriotworld.com
Hey kids... just got in from the final evening practice at Gillette. It was a gorgeous night... perfect weather for a night on the hill... :-) I spent the night with Mike and shared some laughs about our favorite training camp moments of all time... hehehe!
I've got two podcasts to get to so I'm going to make it quick.
* Guys were in shorts, shoulder pads and helmets. Missing guys Brady, Brown, Seymour, Miller and Gramatica were back tonight but Rodney still wasn't on the field.
* Someone was wearing #12 on the field tonight but I don't think it was Brady.. That guy was overthrowing receivers left and right during situational stuff, got picked by Davis and had many tipped balls. Perhaps he's nursing some injury and that's why he wasn't on the field this morning. He was clearly pissed at himself and actually left the field immediately after practice instead of signing autographs. (He's not obligated to sign every day but usually does.)
* During warm ups, Lonie and Josh were grooving to the 70's disco tunes out there and reversed roles for a bit with Josh snapping and Lonie punting.. :-)
* During drills, Woods (45) and Mays (46) practiced blocking punts with their bodies by rushing the punter and taking it in the chest.
* Stevenson (63) took a lap tonight.
* Punt returners were Williams, Poteat and Faulk again.
* Davis (19) made a great diving catch while falling to the ground, covered by Assante Samuel.
* Cassell had a bandage on his shin.
* After Wilfork made a "practice punt catch" at the beginning of practice, I anticipated the annual "Put All the Eggs in one Basket to earn a night off for the team". Sure enough, Wilfork came through catching a Miller punt while holding a ball in one hand. Naturally, his teammates went wild and were happy to get out of running and meetings for the night. (The best was hearing BB tell Miller to back it up... hahaha!)
* Tight Ends and Running Backs signed after practice and Corey Dillon had fun with the crowd trying to get sections to yell the loudest to entice him to sign there first.
Tonight's Soundseeing Tour can heard on Podcast # 85. And unless they pull a last minute cancellation, I'll be back for the final session tomorrow at 2:30. www.patriotworld.com
Just got in from the final 2006 camp session. It's hard to believe that it's over and although I struggled a bit this year with the running around and tight crunch due to the numerous back to backs, TC reports and podcasts, I made it through! (Just 2 podcasts to get up then it's vacation time for me!!)
Here's the final Mrs. B observations and points...
* Practice took place in shorts, shoulder pads, and helmets under partly cloudy skies. It was pretty packed today as many people wanted to take advantage of their last opportunity to see the boys in action.
*My training camp buddy, Mike hooked me up with a ticket to watch the final session in the VIP section with him... and I noticed Mike Reiss sitting in my primo spot...hehehe! (See you next summer, buddy!)
* No sign of Harrison or Wilson tonight nor any of the usual missing dudes.
* Once again, scout work dominated the practice with players wearing Arizona numbers including Wilson (24), Fitzgerald (11), Boldin (81), Johnson (80), Edwards (83). In fact, two of our players each had on 11 and 82.
* Andrews was wearing white again today.. (I did notice yesterday but.. DUH.. it didn't even click with all of the scout stuff and people playing other players going on!)
* Brady, Brown, and Graham did several gassers on their own in the other field during downtimes.
* Kick Returners were Faulk, Maroney, Berlin, Kight, Childress, and Hobbs. Gostkowski was on duty today both for Kickoffs (nice distance) and field goals, nailing every one... delighting all the kids on the hill. (The boys still had their clapping, wooing chant going today :-) They also worked a bit on onside kicks.
* Hobbs had a nice pick off of Cassell, which should boost his waivering confidence.
* Kight made a nice End Zone touchdown being covered by Vernell Brown.
* Brady looked better today than last night but not great IMHO, and hit Troy and Cobbs during hurry up but missed some as well.
*Cassell made a Hail Mary attempt and 4 guys ended up tangled on the ground in a heap. Troy emerged from the bottom, no worse for the wear!
* Defensive Line signed today along with Brady, Vrabel, Izzo, TBC, Brown, etc.... I got a chance to talk to Tully a bit and also asked Wilfork how it felt to be the Hero at the end of yesterday's session.. :-)
* For the final Fashion Update of Camp... Mrs. B closed it out in her traditional game day Throwback Red... which can continue to be seen at the Razor's Edge Tailgate each week! (Stop by and say hi.. all are welcome!) The infamous Man Capris were modeled this afternoon by Lonie, Sullivan, Cassel, Alexander, and Graham. Finally, BB shocked us all this camp by not breaking out the hoodie... guess it's becoming too mainstream now that it's available in the proshop and everybody's got them...hehehe!)
On a final note, thanks to all of you for your nice comments over the past 3 weeks. It's kept me going even when I sometimes didn't feel like making the trek for so many back to back doubles... Then I would get home some days and post my report and later read others and realize that I really didn't have much to say that hadn't already been said.
So.... Patriot Nation, it just may be time to move on... There was a time when Mrs. B's Annual Training Camp Reports were THE source for the Happenings at Patriots Training Camp. However, that's no longer the case and we lucky Patriots fans are treated to a variety of news sources within a matter of minutes...
I've enjoyed sharing my Pats Passion with you over the years and remain...
The sounds of the final camp session will be found on podcast Show #86 (if I can get it posted before leaving for vaca.) www.patriotworld.com