Patriots go inside 'practice bubble' Friday
The New England Patriots hit the practice field again on Friday to prepare for their Super Bowl LII matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles.
It was different scene than it had been earlier in the week, as head coach Bill Belichick took the team into the practice bubble and out of the cold. That was just fine for some of the players.
“One-hundred percent,” said offensive lineman Shaq Mason when asked if it was nice to practice inside.
While it may have been a little warmer, the players were focused on the task at hand.
"It doesn't matter what the conditions are, we're just out there working hard trying to get better,” said offensive lineman Nate Solder.
Inside or outside, the Eagles will be a formidable foe.
Philadelphia quarterback Nick Foles is dangerous even though he was mostly a backup this year, just ask Patriots' second-stringer, Brian Hoyer.
"He was always very well-prepared, can throw the football very well, smart kid,” Hoyer said of Foles. “I've seen him over the years in the NFL. One year, he threw 27 touchdowns and two interceptions, so he's done a great job stepping in."
On the Patriots side of things, it could be anyone stepping in to a big moment at any time. Many players have been on this sized stage before, so do they draw from that experience?
"It's a new year now,” said defensive lineman Trey Flowers. “It's one of those things you have to prepare yourself with and if the opportunity presents itself for me to make a big play, then I'll be prepared for it."
"This is a whole different ballgame,” added Mason. “Different skill sets, different players, so it's really just -- different team, different players, so we have to go about it this way."
Tight end Rob Gronkowski, along with defensive linemen Deatrich Wise, Jr. and Malcolm Brown, were all held out of practice with various injuries.
Quarterback Tom Brady was seen wearing a pair of red gloves on his hands, covering the injury to his throwing hand that he suffered in practice in the week before the AFC Championship game.