The Patriots took their first step towards Super Bowl XLVII on Thursday as they opened training camp for the 2012 season at Gillette Stadium. Over 12,000 fans were reportedly on hand to watch Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski and Co. begin official preparations for the upcoming season.
Wes Welker was also there, and though the wide receiver was not able to come to terms with the team on a long-term contract extension, he did sign his franchise tender and will make $9.5 million this season. Two-time All-Pro guard Brian Waters was the only notable absence, though head coach Bill Belichick declined to say why Waters was not present.
Check out the video above to see the Boston Globe's Shalise Manza Young report on day one of training camp.