FOXBORO, Mass. — New England Patriots slot receiver Riley McCarron finally was starting to stand out from the pack of young pass-catchers hoping to crack the 53-man roster Thursday.
He beat rookie cornerback Duke Dawson twice in 1-on-1 drills and was running with the first team, even catching two passes from starting quarterback Tom Brady.
Then McCarron didn’t run a route with enough precision, which led to an errant Brady pass and a drop. He received a tongue lashing from his QB.
Overall, it was a positive day for McCarron, though he did learn a valuable lesson in the process.
Here are our other notes from Practice 7 of Patriots training camp:
— Brady was 12-of-17 in 11-on-11s and 16-of-22 overall Thursday. Backup quarterback Brian Hoyer was 8-of-13 in 11-on-11s and 10-of-16 overall. Rookie quarterback Danny Etling was 2-of-5 in observed 11-on-11s.
— Two plays specifically stood out during 1-on-1 drills between cornerbacks and wide receivers. Cornerback Ryan Lewis jammed receiver Phillip Dorsett so well off the line of scrimmage that the play was whistled dead.
Receiver Cordarrelle Patterson caught a one-handed pass against cornerback Jason McCourty, who was in good coverage. Jason McCourty has been impressive throughout camp, though he still is running with the second team.
— Dorsett finished practice strong, catching a deep pass from Hoyer and making a contested grab over the middle over cornerback Eric Rowe.
— Center James Ferentz has had an inconsistent camp, but he did shut down defensive end Trey Flowers in 1-on-1 pass-rush drills. Defensive tackle Danny Shelton remains unblockable when single teamed. Trent Brown had a solid day of 1-on-1s, beating pass rusher Adrian Clayborn twice.
— It appears, if the season started today, the Patriots’ starting defense would be Shelton, Flowers, Deatrich Wise, Lawrence Guy, Dont’a Hightower, Kyle Van Noy, Patrick Chung, Duron Harmon, Devin McCourty, Stephon Gilmore and Rowe.
— Clayborn and defensive tackle Adam Butler came on the field for third-down packages.
— Linebacker Kyle Van Noy and safety Damarius Travis broke up passes. Rookie cornerback J.C. Jackson had two pass breakups and intercepted Hoyer. Jackson had a strong spring but hasn’t consistently stood out during camp.
— Patterson made a deep touchdown catch from Hoyer over safety Jordan Richards. Patterson had a lengthy celebration.
— Wide receiver Matthew Slater practiced in uniform, so he’s off the physically unable to perform list. Running back Mike Gillislee, in a non-contact red jersey, returned to practice. Cornerback Keion Crossen (back) worked on a separate field during practice but was in uniform.
— Running back Sony Michel, offensive tackle Marcus Cannon and offensive lineman Nate Theaker were absent.
— Wide receiver Kenny Britt, cornerbacks Jonathan Jones and Cyrus Jones and safety Nate Ebner — all on PUP — worked on a separate field out of uniform. They were joined by wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell.
— The Patriots finished practice by having the defense play offense. Chung and Harmon threw incompletions, wide receiver Chris Hogan had a pass breakup and Rowe dropped a pass. The defense shouldn’t quit their day jobs.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images