The New England Patriots returned to the mountaintop by winning the Super Bowl last year, but they've had as rough of an offseason as anyone. Now that they've turned the page to this season, they're hoping to start fresh. Here's what we've learned in training camp so far:
Garoppolo getting most of the first-team reps
The second-year man out of Eastern Illinois will (probably) be the Patriots’ opening day starter after Tom Brady was suspended for four games (he’s appealing) for his role in the “Deflategate” scandal. It’s been a very long time since the Patriots had anyone other than Tom Brady under center, and New England is practicing accordingly.
Reports out of Foxborough say that Garoppolo has been getting a lot of work with the first team, hoping to get him as comfortable with the offense prior to the season opener. Brady is still getting a lot of snaps with the unit as well, but it's clear the focus is on getting Garoppolo ready to play.
Patriots trying to move on from "Deflategate"
We all about Robert Kraft and Bill Belichick's strong comments on the topic during the first day of training camp, but the topic has largely dropped from consciousness. Aside from the quarterback situation, the Patriots aren't mentioning it and are doing their best to focus all of their attention on football - which is a good thing, since they have to replace Darrelle Revis, Brandon Browner, and Vince Wilfork.