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Patriots name six captains for 2014

Offensive lineman Dan Connolly was named a Patriots team captain for the first time.

AP

Offensive lineman Dan Connolly was named a Patriots captain for the first time.

FOXBOROUGH — The Patriots have named their team captains for the 2014 season.

Chosen were quarterback Tom Brady, offensive lineman Dan Connolly, linebacker Jerod Mayo, safety Devin McCourty, receiver/special teamer Matthew Slater, and defensive tackle Vince Wilfork.

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It is the first time Connolly has been chosen as a captain. Now in his ninth season, seven of them with the Patriots, Connolly started all 16 games last season at right guard, though he could be starting this season at center, where he played for much of 2011.

In his time with New England, Connolly has made starts at all three spots on the interior of the line, and he also is part of NFL lore thanks to his 71-yard kickoff return against Green Bay in 2010, the longest return for an offensive lineman in league history.

The other captains have all had the role multiple times.

This is the 13th time Brady has been a captain, a streak that goes back to 2002, his first full season as the team’s starting quarterback.

It is Mayo’s sixth straight year as a captain. He has been chosen every year but his rookie year of 2008.

McCourty is a captain for the fourth time, although last year he was not a captain to start the season. He and Rob Ninkovich were made captains after injuries to Mayo and Wilfork.

Slater is a captain for the fourth straight year, while Wilfork will hold the role for a seventh year.

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The first injury report of the season came out Wednesday and contained four Patriots, all listed as limited participation: Rob Gronkowski (knee), Michael Buchanan (ankle), Chris Jones (ankle), and Sealver Siliga (hand). All 53 players were present and accounted for at practice . . . The Dolphins listed three players as out: defensive end Terrence Fede (knee), center Mike Pouncey (hip), linebacker Jordan Tripp (chest). They had six players listed as limited in practice . . . The two players the Patriots were awarded off waivers Sunday were both released. Rookie defensive tackles Bruce Gaston and Kelcy Quarles were waived, leaving two open spots on the roster.

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The Patriots shuffled the practice squad, signing three players and releasing three. Offensive lineman Chris Barker, cut from the 53-man roster Monday, was brought back, and the team also signed tight end Allen Reisner and former Dolphins running back Marcus Thigpen. To make room, safety Kanorris Davis, cornerback Daxton Swanson, quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson, and long snapper Charley Hughlett were waived. Hughlett’s days seemed numbered when his first snap of practice Monday hit special teams coach Scotty O’Brien.

Follow Shalise Manza Young on Twitter at @shalisemyoung.
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