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patriots training camp report

Patriots training camp report: Red zone is the place to be

Though there was no contact in practice Thursday, the offensive linemen wore "Guardian Caps," which are designed to protect against head injuries.John Tlumacki/Globe Staff

FOXBOROUGH — Patriots players were seeing red on Day 2 of training camp, and it had nothing to do with the humidity that crept back into New England Thursday.

In a continuation of Opening Day, the Patriots emphasized work in the red zone as they continued to gear up for next week when the pads come on and the contact begins.

“Still working in the red area. Create some little situations here,” said Bill Belichick. “The team generally did a good job trying to do what we needed to do.

“We need to clean up things, start to improve every day, we’ll do that, move onto new situations related to what we did yesterday, but always things to work on and mistakes to correct.”



Not participating: C David Andrews (PUP), RB James White (PUP), CB Jonathan Jones (PUP), S Jabrill Peppers (PUP), DB Myles Bryant (nonfootball injury list), OLs Chasen Hines and Andrew Stueber (nonfootball injury list), P Jake Bailey (nonfootball illness list), DL Deatrich Wise (undisclosed).

Wise was the only new addition to the list. He and Stueber were the only two not spotted working out in some way, shape, or form.

The players warmed up before their second day of workouts in training camp.John Tlumacki/Globe Staff


DRESS CODE: Helmets and shorts.

TOP PLAY: DeVante Parker had another top-notch day as the 6-foot-3-inch, 219-pound receiver (dude looks bigger!) continues to form a partnership with Mac Jones. A twisting Parker snagged a nifty back-shoulder toss from Jones despite some in-your-mug coverage from Jalen Mills.

Defending Parker when he was with the Dolphins was always a challenge for New England’s secondary, and that has not changed now that he is wearing the red, white, and blue.


▪ Jones’s best toss of the day was a tight scoring strike to Kendrick Bourne, who had shaken Terrance Mitchell. Bourne celebrated with a big spike.


▪ Bourne was very upset after an end zone fade from Jones bounced off his fingertips during the final red zone period. Bourne plays with passion.

▪ Jones floated an end zone fade to Nelson Agholor, who tiptoed along the line. While Agholor signaled catch to the crowd, defender Malcolm Butler shook his head and motioned incomplete.

Defensive back Brenden Schooler let his hair down while stretching.John Tlumacki/Globe Staff

▪ Both Matt Patricia and Joe Judge used walkie-talkies during team periods, indicating that both have a hand in what plays are being sent to the quarterbacks.

▪ In a rotation change, fourth-round rookie quarterback Bailey Zappe took the second set of snaps after Jones during competitive team periods. Brian Hoyer went second Wednesday. Zappe has a very strong arm but struggled with his accuracy and went 0 for 4 in his final reps during an 11-on-11 red zone period.

▪ Trent Brown (penalty) and J.J. Taylor (fumble) ran penalty laps.

▪ Shaun Wade has been getting reps at slot corner and had a pass breakup of a Zappe pass intended for Lil’Jordan Humphrey. The 6-1, 191-pound Wade has a certain smoothness to his game.

▪ With Bailey out, Jones served as the holder on kicks, though no actual kicks were taken; it was more practicing the operation.

▪ Linebacker Mack Wilson could serve as the backup long snapper behind Joe Cardona.

▪ While their teammates headed to the training hills after the final period, the quarterbacks and receivers stayed up and held a deep-ball drill.

Matthew Judon posed for a selfie with fans at the end of practice.John Tlumacki/Globe Staff

▪ The rookies sang happy birthday to Christian Barmore (23) during the post-practice gathering.


▪ Jones threw some post-practice tosses to Matthew Slater’s kids.

▪ Lawrence Guy, Carl Davis Jr., Barmore, Davon Godchaux, Henry Anderson, Sam Roberts, Daniel Ekuale, and LaBryan Ray signed autographs after the session.

▪ Pro Football Hall of Fame finalist Robert Kraft took in the first part of practice.

▪ Agent Drew Rosenhaus was in the house. He chatted with Belichick and had bear hugs for clients Brown and Godchaux, who signed a two-year extension Wednesday. Brown crashed Godchaux’s chat with reporters to give him a congratulatory hug.


Friday: Practice, 9:30 a.m. (gates open at 8).

Saturday: Practice, 9:30 a.m. (gates open at 8).

Sunday: Off

Jim McBride can be reached at james.mcbride@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @globejimmcbride.