FOXBORO, Mass. — Wide receiver Wes Welker was back on the practice field Monday during the Patriots' organized team activities. He took part in a half-hour of drills before departing to the practice bubble to work out individually with the team trainers.
Seventy-eight of the 86 players on the roster were in attendance for the non-contact practice, which was conducted in helmets, shorts and practice jerseys. It was consistent with the other two OTAs that the media has been permitted to attend, with players working in positional drills, offensive- and defensive-specific formations and 7-on-7 drills.
Rookie wide receiver Taylor Price (can't attend until after Ohio University's June 9 graduation), cornerback Leigh Bodden (unknown), safety Brandon McGowan (unknown), rookie defensive lineman Kade Weston (unknown), left guard Logan Mankins (contract dispute), offensive lineman Nick Kaczur (unknown), rookie tight end Aaron Hernandez (unknown) and defensive lineman Ty Warren (finishing his degree at Texas A&M) were the eight players missing.
New England's veterans reported last week to OTAs, and Price, Weston, Mankins and Warren have missed each of the two sessions that were seen by the media. This is the first such absence for Bodden, McGowan, Kaczur and Hernandez.
Safety Pat Chung was still wearing the red, non-contact jersey, but he shed the cast that he was wearing last week on his left wrist.
The Patriots have three more voluntary OTAs — Tuesday, Thursday and Friday — before mandatory minicamp from June 15-17. Media will watch Thursday's session and all three days of minicamp.