New England Patriots

By Alex Barth, 985TheSportsHub.com

The final week or so before roster cut downs can usually be described as the ‘dog days’ of the season. This year, that’s compounded with no preseason games to break up the days.

“Honestly, this has been a grind,” Julian Edelman told reporters on Tuesday. “We’ve been having 6 day practices (sic)…or, usually you’d have 4 days off, or 4 days on, a day off, you break up when you start playing other teams in the preseason. This has been a straight grind the whole time.”

Tuesday should have probably been the final day of Patriots training camp practice, with a travel day Wednesday and the preseason finale on Thursday, leading into the weekend of roster cuts. Instead, the team wrapped up “training camp” last week, but has continued to practice on a regular-season like schedule.

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“We’re going on like five weeks, is it five, six?,” Edelman continued. “It’s definitely different. It’s something everyone is dealing with, so, like I said, the team that deals with this the best, and takes advantage of this time, and really goes to work with purpose, is going to be the team that puts themselves in the best situation to go out and win.”

With no similar situation to use as context, how does a team know if they’re making the most of their summer practices?

“I think you know you’re ready is through how you feel after you compound days and days and weeks and weeks of good practicing and good habits,” Edelman said. “That’s when you usually put yourself in the best situation, the best feeling to go in feeling ready.”

Also making this year different for Edelman is the fact he’s been given rest days at practice, which he said is “the first time [he’s] really done this” in his twelve years in the league. Asked if there’s a specific reason for the lightened workload, the 34-year-old replied, “We don’t talk about health here. I don’t even know if I can…we don’t talk about that.”

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The success of the Patriots offseason plan, as well as their plan to give Edelman a more relaxed camp, will be put to its first test in less than two weeks. Miami visits Gillette Stadium next Sunday – for all the info you need leading up to that game, make sure to keep checking in with 985TheSportsHub.com.

Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at Alexander.Barth@bbgi.com.