Attendance: WR Malcolm Mitchell, WR Jordan Matthews and special teams ace Matthew Slater were absent from practice. Owner Bob Kraft was in attendance. Bill Belichick said Malcolm Mitchell is day to day
Players: Three players spoke after practice Monday night: NT Danny Shelton, WR Cordarrelle Patterson and C David Andrews. All three players said it was a fun night to practice in front of approximately 20,000 fans. Shelton said he admires former Pats NT Vince Wilfork. Shelton has studied Wilfork's technique on film.
Observations: It is time to cool it on the Cordarrelle Patterson being the next Randy Moss talk. Patterson is on his third team since 2013. While he has had several impressive catches since the start of training camp, his strength has been as a returner. While he has the speed to make deep catches, the issue remains whether he can run routes in a complex offense and develop chemistry with Tom Brady. If the season opened today - Eric Rowe and Stephon Gilmore would likely be the starting cornerbacks. As for wide receiver, it is wide open who will make the team after Julian Edelman (suspended the first four games) and Chris Hogan. Patterson, Jordan Matthews, Riley McCarron, Devin Lucien, Phillip Dorsett and Paul Turner are all in the mix. Still disappointing that the Pats were not able to sign either Brandon Cooks (now with the Los Angeles Rams) or Danny Amendola (now with the Miami Dolphins). Cooks wanted a long term contract that he received after being traded to the Rams. As for Amendola, it just does not make sense. He signed a two- year $12 million contract with the Dolphins. The Pats should have matched given that Amendola caught 61 passes a year ago and had seven catches for 84 yards including two touchdowns and a big punt return in the Pats AFC Championship win over Jacksonville.
Rookie OT Isaiah Wynn caught a Ryan Allen punt to close practice. He dropped the first punt and caught the second one. It was definitely a big moment because both Bill Belichick and Ernie Adams (Belichick's most trusted advisor since 1975) smiled at the same time. The odds seem greater of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump having dinner then this happening. Many of the players including Brady and Julian Edelman signed autographs after practice. The crowd was especially boisterous - screaming the names of many players. Former Pats TE Jermaine Wiggins attended the practice and signed autographs afterwards. Wiggins makes for a great answer to a trivia question because he caught the last pass before Adam Vinatieri's game-winning kick to beat the Rams in the Super Bowl.
Bill Belichick said practicing inside Gillette Stadium was a great way for special teams to get used to game conditions. Belichick said he has never coached anyone as big as Trent Brown who is 6 foot 8 380 pounds.
Funny moment of the night: Pizza was provided to the media before practice and the press went through about 15 boxes of pizza in about 11 minutes. 39 year veteran cameraman Walt McGraw for Channel 25 in Boston did not get a slice. McGraw was on the field for the Pats final regular season game against the New York Jets in 2017 when the wind chill was below zero at kickoff. McGraw probably should have received a huge bonus from Channel 25 that day.
No one is tougher than McGraw who has filmed every major sports event in the last 30 years. The pizza ran out just before he was about to get a slice. McGraw went up to Pats PR Man Aaron Salkin and said "Have there been budget cuts around here?" On Wednesday (the next Pats practice) your humble correspondent plans to bring McGraw a slice from the finest pizza place in Boston. Any sponsors?