Offensive lineman Nick Kaczur had been the sure bet to fill in for Logan Mankins this season while Mankins continues to hold out due to a dispute with his contract, however it appears there may be an issue with that plan after ESPNBoston.com had a report last night that Kaczur could be sidelined indefinitely and miss this season due to a ‘significant’ back injury.

Mike Reiss takes a look at what this will mean to the Patriots, and how they may deal with it.  He breaks down each of the players at that position, and talks about who may be the best fit.

Christopher Price of WEEI.com also looks at what they may do to replace Kaczur, and has an in-depth piece on a possible solution.

Adam Schefter of ESPN was in Foxboro yesterday on his training camp tour, and spoke to WEEI where he reinforced an earlier report on Tom Brady’s contract situation, saying ‘It’s going to get done’.

After a week of mostly¬†double sessions, Belichick granted all the players a gift and gave them this weekend off before they’ll return Monday afternoon to prepare for the New Orleans Saints coming in for¬†joint practices beginning on Tuesday.

Nate Taylor of the Boston Globe has an article this morning on veteran tight end Alge Crumpler, who he writes is ‘on a mission’ this year as he looks to establish a role with his new football team.

Jeff Howe of NESN.com has an article on runningback Laurence Maroney, who has been sporting different hairstyles during camp, although he’s hoping to make more of a statement on the field with his play¬†than with his hair.

“This is probably going to be my new style for the year — rough,” Maroney said. “It’s my statement. Rough, that‚Äôs how I’ve got to be on the field, rough. I can’t go out there being all pretty because then you’re all going to say I’m dancing, tap shoes.”

Howe also writes that it was Brian Hoyer who got most of the snaps during practice while Brady was given a bit of a breather yesterday afternoon – and looked pretty solid during the session.

The team also had a transaction yesterday, claiming safety Josh Barrett, and releasing runningback Thomas Clayton.

Mark Farinella of the Attleboro Sun Chronicle has an article this morning on veteran nose tackle Vince Wilfork, who is taking training camp in stride, and said that one of the goals for this season is to be able to close out football games, which was a problem for them last season.

“We know what it takes to be good, and we’re striving to be good,” he continued. “We want to be great. We want to be that team that, in the fourth quarter, we can win ballgames. All that stuff starts now.”

The Sun Chronicle also has an article this morning which talks about the fact that the MBTA plans on having special trains that will be running to the stadium this season for anyone interested.

The battle at wide receiver rages on, and Glen Farley of the Patriot Ledger has an article on Buddy Farnham, who he compares to former Patriot Sean Morey, who was a player who was a longshot to make the team but managed to make the practice squad with New England before moving on as a full time NFL player elsewhere.

Karen Guregian talks to Kevin Faulk, who now in his 30’s is battling father time as he tries to get ready for another NFL season.¬† In another piece Guregian writes that it’s his wife’s cooking that has done the trick in keeping him healthy.

The Star out of North Carolina has an article on Brandon Spikes, who is looking forward to his first season in the NFL after a solid college career at the University of Florida.

The Worcester Telegram has an article on receiver Julian Edelman, who took reps at runningback during Friday’s practice.

FRIDAY PRACTICE NOTES:

Afternoon Session:

Afternoon Practice Notes - WEEI.com
Wilfork welcomes Saints challenge; Fri. PM Notes РPatriots.com
Patriots practice 17 observations РESPNBoston.com
Quick Kicks: Practice 17 observations РPatriots.com

Morning Session:

From the Hart: Practice 16 observations РPatriots.com
Quick hits from training camp session No. 16 РBoston.com