Breaking Down New England Patriots' 5 Biggest Training Camp Projects

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Breaking Down New England Patriots' 5 Biggest Training Camp Projects
USA TODAY Sports
Can Kenbrell Thompkins take a step forward in his second year?

With training camp set to begin July 24, the New England Patriots have the luxury of a deep, talented roster.

With an enviable combination of veteran stability and youthful upside, Bill Belichick and the front office have constructed a roster capable of withstanding the inevitable attrition of an NFL season.

However, that does not mean the depth chart is set in stone.

Belichick has never been afraid to deploy players regardless of age, seeking only to maximize the Pats' probability of winning—young, unheralded contributors have a chance to rise faster than expected based on merit.

Certain "projects" will not bear fruit in 2014.

For instance, rookies Jimmy Garoppolo and Zach Moore will effectively take a redshirt season. Their greater roles are down the line.

Conversely, certain players represent unknown commodities but could work their way into important roles with impressive summers.  Though the Pats are not counting on them, they offer enough upside to warrant tracking during camp.

With the 2014 season in mind, here are five projects who could pay unexpected dividends in the fall.

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