New England Patriots

PHILADELPHIA, PA - AUGUST 19: Head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots talks to Mac Jones #10 against the Philadelphia Eagles in the first half of the preseason game at Lincoln Financial Field on August 19, 2021 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Patriots defeated the Eagles 35-0. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

It’s time to find out which Patriots players had a good – or not-so-good – summer in Foxborough.

Thursday marked the Patriots’ final open practice of 2021 training camp. Friday will likely be a non-padded walkthrough and will be treated like an in-season practice, meaning it’s closed to the media except for a brief 20-30 minute period. From there, it’s the preseason finale and, then, Week 1 of the regular season.

From July until now, more than a dozen players have either improved their status or seen a decline in their personal stock.

One player you won’t see on either list: starting quarterback Cam Newton. Despite being less efficient and disciplined than rookie Mac Jones in passing game drills – and missing five days of in-person work due to what the Patriots termed a “misunderstanding” of NFL COVID-19 protocols – Newton remains the first quarterback up in team drills, and the projected first quarterback under center in Week 1 against the Dolphins. Call him “neutral,” despite Jones breathing down his neck by virtue of his own ability (and availability).

A number of Patriots players at other positions emerged as key players, to varying degrees, throughout training camp. Others disappointed, relative to their pedigree or to the opportunities placed in front of them. Let’s go “Up” and “Down” with the Patriots players you ought to know about from our reporting at training camp.

MORE: Complete Patriots Training Camp Coverage

Matt Dolloff is a writer and podcaster 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? Yell at him on Twitter @mattdolloff and follow him on Instagram @mattydsays. You can also email him at