New England Patriots

By Matt Dolloff,

And on the third day, Tom Brady rested.

The Patriots took the field for their eighth training camp practice on Friday, Brady’s first as a 41-year-old. But unfortunately for the many fans in attendance, who repeatedly sang “Happy Birthday” for No. 12, they didn’t get to see the four-time Super Bowl MVP make a single throw. One of his “gifts” on Friday? Zero snaps in competitive team drills.

Brian Hoyer got the vast majority of the reps with the first team offense, and he had an up and down day. For every nice connection he made with a receiver, he sailed a throw high or threw an interception. All the while, Brady relaxed on the sidelines.

It felt like a de facto day off for some of the Patriots’ veterans in general. Rob Gronkowski also had a light day, as did safety Devin McCourty. The vets did not, however, get to skip the hill runs at the very end of practice.

It’s not unprecedented for Brady to rest on his birthday. As noted by Jeff Howe, he didn’t practice on his 40th birthday a year ago either. He threw 25 pass attempts on his 39th birthday in 2016, but the Pats didn’t practice at all in 2015.

So, nothing out of the ordinary for Brady or the team. A little break for the now-41-year-old, who figures to get right back to it on Saturday.

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at