By: Ian Logue
Wide Receiver Julian Edelman said on Sunday that returning punts continues to be something he enjoys doing. (USA TODAY Images)
EDELMAN LOVES WHAT HE DOES:
Despite the injury risk that’s inherent with guys who tend to return punts, Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman loves what he does and wouldn’t have it any other way.
Meeting with reporters on Sunday the veteran wide receiver said it’s a part of the game that helped him make the team, and he loves every bit of it.
“I love returning punts,” Edelman told the Boston Herald. “That’s a part of the game that gave me the opportunity to make this team, and I love returning punts. I love (special teams) coach (Scott) O’Brien. I love the scheme. I love all that stuff. I want to do that. I would love to do that. If they ask me to do it, I will do it with a smile on my face.”
Edelman actually accomplished something pretty impressive last season, grabbing 105 receptions and 35 punt returns which, according to the Herald, made him the first player in franchise history to do so.
RB JAMES DEVELIN RECEIVES PRAISE:
Patriots director of player personnel Nick Caserio spoke to the media on Sunday and had high praise for running back James Develin, who had a good season last year and is off to another great start thus far in camp.
One of the things Caserio pointed out about Develin is his versatility, which is something, as we know, Bill Belichick always appreciates when it comes to guys who can fill multiple roles.
“The unique thing about James, he’s a very versatile player, and we saw that even going back to last season — he’s able to line up in the backfield, at tight end, detached from the formation,” Caserio said via ESPN BOSTON. “James is very smart, works very, very hard. He had a great offseason. As a player, from Day 1 that he entered the program to where he is now, he’s really improved. He’s put in a lot of time. It’s a credit to him. He’s smart and versatile, so he gives you a little bit of flexibility because he can do a number of different things — he can block with force in the running game, he can put his hand down on the line of scrimmage and block with force on the line of scrimmage. He’s earned all his opportunities with his performance and his work ethic.”
Meanwhile, Develin said it’s been a long journey to get where he is, but he’s glad the Patriots have given him this chance.
“It’s been a long road,” he told the Boston Herald. “But I’m very, very appreciative of his organization giving me the opportunities they’ve given me in the past and I’m thankful to be here. I’m just going to work hard for this team and help them win some games.”
RIDLEY NOT WORRIED ABOUT HIS CONTRACT:
Patriots running back Stevan Ridley had a rough outing in 2013, just one year removed from a season where he rushed for over 1200 yards.
Now he finds himself at a crossroads with a contract and his career in New England at stake heading into this season. According to Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald, at this point, Ridley and the Patriots haven’t discussed the possibility of an extension. Howe writes that he doesn’t expect anything to happen until after the season, “if it does happen at all”.
Ridley was also asked on Sunday if the contract is weighing on him.
“Not really,” Ridley told the newspaper. “I have to be honest about it. It’s there, but it’s not my first concern. My first concern is going out there and being the best player for this team. I think if I go out there and have a productive year and do what I need to do, the contract will take care of itself.
“I’m not really going to put too much thought into it because I think as you guys know, if I start thinking about that, I could easily be a distraction. I can’t really worry with that. I’m going to have some good days, going to have some bad days but I’m going to keep working, keep my head in the dirt and grinding it out.”
PATRICK CHUNG GLAD TO BE BACK
After being away from the team down in Philadelphia, Patriots safety Patrick Chung seems to be enjoying his time now that he’s back here in New England.
Chung is spending his time getting reacclimated with his team but he said he’s glad to be back.
“I love it,” Chung told WEEI.com on Sunday. “Love it here. Culture is good here. Fans are good here. Coaches are good here. Locker room is good here. Food is good here. I like it here, man. It’s home.”
Chung is battling with Tavon Wilson, Duran Harmon and others as he tries to earn a roster spot. He told WEEI that everyone is working hard and for now the focus is to just keep getting better.
“We’re all competing,” Chung said. “With a good secondary back there, we’re all competing. Everybody is working hard, learning the defense to try and get better day by day. Whoever plays is whoever plays, whether it be starting, second string, special teams, it doesn’t really matter. It’d be great if we could all get on the field at some point. We just have to work hard to get better.”
SUNDAY CAMP REPORTS:
Sunday Practice Observations – Derek Havens, PatsFans.com
Patriots Camp Report: Day 4 – Mike Reiss,ESPN BOSTON
Observations from Patriots Camp: Day 4: Mike Reiss & Lee Schechter, ESPN BOSTON
Sunday Notes: Brandon Browner Brings the Noise Before Mother Nature Brings the Hammer – Mike Petraglia, WEEI
Patriots Blog: Observations From Day 3 At Training Camp – Levan Reid, WBZ-TV
Patriots Notebook: Happy returns for Julian Edelman – Jeff Howe: Howe files his notebook, which leads off with a bit on Julian Edelman and the fact he’s continuing to try and do his part “to earn a role”.
Stevan Ridley tries to block out contract thoughts – Jeff Howe: Howe writes that Ridley is focused on “just grinding it out” instead of worrying about his contract.
Stevan Ridley in running for new deal – Jeff Howe: Howe has more on Ridley, who is in need of a good year to earn a new deal, although Howe points out that running backs have been disposable on this team in recent years.
James Develin won’t get close to comfort – Adam Kurkjian: Kurkjian has an article on James Develin, who said he’s never going to let himself get too comfortable.
Notes: Stevan Ridley comfortable stepping up as leader – Michael Vega: Vega files his notebook this morning and writes that going into year four Ridley’s trying to take on more of a leadership role with the team.
5 Takeaways To Go Along With 5 Days of Patriots Training Camp – Zuri Berry: Berry has thoughts on what’s gone down so far, which includes the fact that Darrelle Revis has been exactly as advertised.
Patriots Sign 2 WRs; FB Develin praised – Mike Reiss: Reiss has a quick entry on the fact the team brought in a couple of receivers following the Patriots waiving Greg Orton.
Julian Edelman: ‘I love returning punts’ – Lee Schechter: Schechter has more on Edelman’s comments from Sunday.
New England Patriots’ projected roster – Mike Reiss: Reiss does a projection this morning and feels after a shaky start for Jimmy Garoppolo at this point in camp that Ryan Mallett seems to have the early edge.
Nick Caserio: Patriots Ready to take “Good” with “Bad” on Jimmy Garoppolo – Mike Petraglia: Petraglia has comments from Caserio, who said the team is prepared to deal with the growing pains the rookie will likely experience.
Patrick Chung is Really Happy to Be Back – Mike Petraglia: Petraglia has an article on Chung, who said “it’s home” when talking about being back.
Breer: What to expect from Gronk this season – The NFL Network’s Albert Breer gave his thoughts on Rob Gronkowski and what fans can expect coming off of a torn ACL.
New England Patriots: First Impressions From Training Camp – James Christensen: Christensen has a good article with some impressions on the team so far through camp.
ATTLEBORO SUN CHRONICLE:
PATRIOTS: Ridley looking to score in 2014 – Mark Farinella: Farinella has an article on Ridley, who is focused on having more success down in the red zone this season.