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Thursday, July 31, 2008
Brady back and other notes from Foxborough


Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Graham

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- New England Patriots QB Tom Brady was back on the field Thursday morning after getting an excused absence from Wednesday's late practice.

C Ryan Wendell was taken off the PUP list and on the field, too. The fans rejoiced.

CB Fernando Bryant showed no residual effects from his scare Thursday, when he banged his left knee on the ground and needed medical assistance before getting up.

Brady was on target when they ran their goal-line offense. He and WR Randy Moss seem to have telepathic powers. Brady throws the ball in just the right spot, and Moss perfectly contorts his body to shield the ball from the defender and make the easy grab.

Moss didn't address reporters again Thursday, making it a full week into a camp without speaking into a microphone. He has been gracious with fans, signing autographs and posing for pictures along the ropes.

This morning featured a little good-natured rookie hazing. A remote portion of the practice field was turned into a swamp and the veterans ordered the rookies to dive in.

Not exactly a Code Red. If this is hazing, then everybody who played in last year's Monday night game between the Steelers and Dolphins at Heinz Field should start a fraternity.

"We've really been pretty tame about it around here," ILB Tedy Bruschi said. "They tell a joke. They sing a song. You dive through a puddle. Sometimes you get a haircut. I had my haircut by Ben Coates 13 years ago, and I had a big head of hair. He took it all off."

With hazing on the mind, some of today's questions dealt with whether there's veteran privilege in the NFL.

S Rodney Harrison on needing to prove himself every year: "We all should because we're all one play away from never playing this game. So it doesn't matter if you're in your 15th season and you're 35 years old or you're 22. It's about not taking anything for granted when you get on this field."

Bruschi: "Let's talk about a guy like Larry Izzo, that's been strictly special teams all 13 years and still has to prove he can play backup inside linebacker. He's had to do that year in and year out and have his job threatened every year. Yet here he is. He's a great example of trying to improve on what you did the year before."