Bill Belichick proud of way Patriots handled challenge of unique training camp

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It was a very different summer for the Patriots and the rest of the NFL.

After the entire offseason program being virtual, it was a much different training camp. There were no preseason games, joint practices and at times players worked non-stop for six straight days.

Speaking via video conference Tuesday, Bill Belichick praised his players for how they handled it all.

“I think these guys really handled things very professionally,” he said. “They understood the things that they needed to do, both individually and what we need to do as a team. There are a lot of new policies, protocols, just the daily routine. Things changed quite a bit from on what guys around here have been used to and guys that were new coming in, maybe didn't know what our routine was but they had to adapt to a routine that was different from wherever it was they came from. So, that includes the coaches and all the other support people and so forth. A lot of things we adjusted as we went.

“We made some changes from the first day and couple days and first week and so forth, so it's very much of an ongoing process. And that may occur now too, as we get into the regular season. We've tried to take what we did in training camp and modify it so that we can be efficient in the regular season, but might have to do that too, but I think that the staff, not just the coaching staff, but the entire staff that, you know, whether it's handling on our food or equipment or the training room so forth… and then obviously the players. They've all been very professional, handled things well. Made adjustments. Sometimes, not easy adjustments or sometimes things needed to be done very quickly, because we recognize a situation needed to be adjusted or fixed, so they reacted and got those things done.”

On Tuesday, the NFL announced for the testing period Aug. 30-Sept. 5 17,519 tests were administered to 2,641 players and there was only one confirmed positive test.

The NFL opens the regular season this week.