August 1, 2008

Patriots Training Camp 2008

Took a day off from work and made our annual trip to the New England Patriots Training Camp.

In the morning, they held a walkthrough in t-shirts and shorts. In the evening, they were in full pads and helmets.

A few observations:
  • The new "Patriot Place" currently being built is going to be rather special. The Hall of Fame looks really nice and the CBS Scene restaurant will be amazing. Where Gillette Stadium used to look like a football stadium in the middle of nowhere, it now looks like a football stadium in the middle of a shopping plaza. Quite a change.
  • Randy Moss catches a football far more smoothly than anyone I've ever seen. Watching him catch a football gently in his hands, then watching someone else catch with their arms is like watching two totally different physical actions.
  • The new first-round draft pick - Jerod Mayo - looks fast. He also doesn't look out of place while playing inside linebacker with the first string defense.
  • During the morning walkthrough, you could see what the players actually look like without all the padding and helmets. For example, Lawrence Maroney looks skinnier than I would have expected, while Kyle Eckel was much more solid than expected.
  • During the evening session, the Pats conducted 2-minute drills. Brady led the offense downfield, but wasn't able to score in the required time. Needless to say, he was extremely unhappy about that!
While I don't want to wish the summer away, the yearly camp visit really makes me look forward to the start of football season!