Amendola not spotted at practice

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Wide receiver Danny Amendola was not spotted during the media accessible portion of Monday's practice at Gillette Stadium. The reason for his absence is not known at this time.

Amendola, signed this offseason, has not missed any time during training camp and has emerged as the team's top receiver, primed to assume the role Wes Welker held for much of the past six seasons.

Other players not spotted at the start of practice included defensive back Brandon Jones, defensive linemen Jermaine Cunningham and Armond Armstead (non-football injury list), wide receiver Mark Harrison (non-football injury list) and tight end Rob Gronkowski (physically unable to perform list).

Quarterback Tom Brady again was wearing a brace on his left knee, the same one he wore during Friday night's game against the Buccaneers.

Defensive back Devin McCourty, who is recovering from offseason shoulder surgery, shed the red non-contact jersey he had previously been wearing during camp. He has not played in either of the team's preseason game, but is on pace to be ready for the start of the regular season.

On a lighter note, members of the team's grounds crew were watering down a patch of grass behind one of the team's two practice fields, likely in anticipation of a rookie "slip-n-slide" that takes place annually. Rookies typically are charged with the task of recovering a "fumble" while sliding through the soggy grass, a fun way to mix up practice a bit (except not fun for the rookies).

The Patriots will practice again on Tuesday. They will travel to Detroit on Wednesday in advance of their Thursday night game against the Lions.