FOXBOROUGH — Patriots training camp is a month away (July 30), but veteran linebacker Tedy Bruschi put on his coach’s hat and held his own football camp today at Gillette Stadium.
Fifty-four lucky children all dressed in No. 54 jerseys were participating in the second annual Kids Football Clinic with Tedy Bruschi, sponsored by insurance company SBLI (Savings Bank Life Insurance Co. of Massachusetts). The campers were chosen based on essays they had to write about their “game-plan” for being healthy and doing well in school.
Bruschi, who addressed the campers in the Gillette visitors’ locker room prior to them taking the field, obviously took the camp very seriously, taking a page out of Patriots coach Bill Belichick’s playbook when it came to preparation and planning.
Did Bruschi consult with his coach?
“No, but I’ve had this going on in my head for a while,” said Bruschi. “I’ve mapped out the field, where the stations will be, how the guys will teach their fundamentals. It’s a little Belichickian because I’ve been trying to keep it organized. You heard me talking to the kids about getting better and doing their job. So, hopefully they can learn something today.”
Bruschi, who is entering his 14th NFL season and is in the last year of his contract, opened the door to the possibility of going into coaching after his playing days are done.
“I know I can coach. I know I can coach,” he said. “I know the game. I’ve been in it so long. It’s just going to be a matter of what I do when I’m done. I don’t know. It’s a passion of mine. I know I love football. I know I want to be in it. Let’s just see what I’ll be doing.”
As far as when Bruschi will call it quits, that remains up in the air. He repeated his stance that he is not looking beyond this season.
“After you get past 10 [years], I think that’s the way you have to do it because you never know what’s going to happen within a year,” Bruschi said. “You just don’t. So, when the season is over you kind of reassess things and that’s how it’s going to go again.”
Joining Bruschi in instructing the campers were teammates linebacker Jerod Mayo, tight end David Thomas, safety Ray Ventrone and kicker Stephen Gostkowski. Former Patriots quarterback Scott Zolak was also on board as an instructor.
“This is awesome. I’m very excited to do this,” said Bruschi. “I get to work with kids on Gillette Stadium’s home turf, so it’s exciting for them too.”