Shalise Manza Young | Practice Report

With Eagles on deck, Patriots take it easy

Offensive lineman Cameron Fleming (second from right) masqueraded as Tom Brady, to the amusement of Chris Barker (64), Jordan Devey (65), and Dan Connolly (63). Globe Staff Photo/Jim Davis)
Jim Davis/Globe Staff
Offensive lineman Cameron Fleming (second from right) masqueraded as Tom Brady, to the amusement of Chris Barker (64), Jordan Devey (65), and Dan Connolly (63).

FOXBOROUGH — The Patriots were in shells and shorts for Monday’s practice and had a fairly light day in anticipation of more intense work Tuesday and Wednesday when the Eagles come to town.

The big news of the day was the training camp debuts of first-round pick Dominique Easley and WR Aaron Dobson; Easley had been on the active/non-football injury list due to a torn ACL he suffered last year while with Florida, and Dobson had been on active/physically unable to perform after offseason foot surgery.

Both took part in practice on a limited basis, taking their positions during the walkthrough period and participating in individual drills before spending some time on a side field with strength and conditioning coach Harold Nash. They returned as observers for the later portion of practice.


Rob Gronkowski took part in seven-on-seven work for the first time, though the team took the precaution of putting him in a red noncontact jersey before putting him on the field for those periods.

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Gronkowski told reporters Sunday that he still has not been cleared for contact by the training staff, but when asked to confirm that, Bill Belichick would only say, “We have players in a lot of different situations physically. Whatever they are, that’s the way we proceed.”

And Ryan Mallett also was not present for the second straight day. He has been at the Patriots facility, but took a few hits during Thursday’s preseason game; Belichick said on WEEI that Mallett is “day to day.”

Attendance, please

Physically unable to perform: WR Jeremy Gallon.

Non-football injury: OL Chris Martin.


Missing: QB Ryan Mallett, CB Brandon Browner, TE Michael Hoomanawanui, DT Chris Jones, TE D.J. Williams, C Bryan Stork, DT Sealver Siliga, LB Ja’Gared Davis, LB Cameron Gordon, S Tavon Wilson, S Kanorris Davis, RB Tyler Gaffney.

Returned to practice: LB James Anderson.

Dress code

Shells and shorts.

Top plays

 It would most certainly have drawn an offensive pass interference flag, but Julian Edelman made a great one-handed grab over the middle in 11-on-11, grabbing Kyle Arrington’s jersey and then pushing off him as he rose up for the ball.

 Rookie CB Malcolm Butler got a lot of time with the first team and made a great interception in 11-on-11 work — Tom Brady threw a deep pass for Kenbrell Thompkins and Butler tapped the ball to himself and made the pick while tip-toeing the sideline to stay inbounds.

Three Up


 Butler: He continues to open eyes at practice. He did put on a red non-contact jersey during team work, indicating he’s nursing some sort of injury. That’s something to keep an eye on.

 Jamie Collins: The second-year linebacker had two pass breakups of Brady attempts in 11-on-11, the first when he knocked the ball away from James Develin on a sideline pass 15 yards downfield, and the second on a throw intended for Edelman over the middle.

 Edelman: Brady is working to get the ball to Danny Amendola, Thompkins, and others, but Edelman has been his most reliable target all summer.

Two Down

 Josh Boyce: The receiver continues to have an up-and-down camp. On Tuesday, a ball from Brady went off his hands and it resulted in an easy interception for Nate Ebner.

 Hurry-up offense: When the Patriots tried this, the results with both Brady and Jimmy Garoppolo under center weren’t great, with Brady 4 for 8 and Garoppolo 2 for 6.

Gronk Watch

Rob Gronkowski took another step in his return, participating in 7-on-7 work, though he donned a red non-contact jersey just as a reminder to defenders (and maybe to himself) that he can’t do everything just yet. He also did his now-customary one-on-one with Brady, and also Brady and Darrelle Revis, running routes and catching passes while teammates did special teams work.

Odds AND Ends

 Rookie OL Cameron Fleming tried to have a little fun with the crowd when he walked onto the field for the start of practice — he had a red No. 12 jersey stretched over his chest and belly, and was raising his arms, trying to get cheers, and he did get a smattering. But the act didn’t last long, and he peeled off the jersey and gave it to Brady after a short game of catch with Garoppolo.

 During one 7-on-7 rep, Brady saw no one open and threw the ball directly to Revis. It’s probably the only time since Revis signed with New England that Brady has been glad to see one of his passes end up in Revis’s hands.

 Rookie LB Taylor McCuller got more work at fullback, running routes in 7-on-7.

 As has happened several times, practice ended with the entire team running up the slope on the back end of the fields.

 Former Buccaneers and Rutgers coach Greg Schiano was at practice. Schiano, a friend of Bill Belichick’s, was on his knees as he watched special teams drills . . . Boston College hockey coach Jerry York was also at practice.

Upcoming Schedule

Tuesday: Joint practice with Eagles at Gillette Stadium, 2 p.m.

Wednesday: Joint practice with Eagles at Gillette Stadium, 2 p.m. (final public practice)

Thursday: No practice.

Friday: Exhibition Game No. 2 vs. Eagles at Gillette Stadium, 7:30 p.m.

Shalise Manza Young

Shalise Manza Young can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @shalisemyoung.