FOXBORO - He doesn't have the three Super Bowl rings or the supermodel wife, although some believe that someday, his chance for those will come.
Right now, Ryan Mallett would just like it if his head coach would stop knocking him around.
The rookie quarterback, seen as a potential eventual replacement for Tom Brady, is finding his way in his first training camp with the Patriots, and that way occasionally has a few unexpected twists.
One of them came when, while Mallett was running a seemingly nondescript drill, Belichick wound up and fired a blocking pad at him as the rookie stepped underneath center.
"He's got me a couple of times," Mallett said of the surprise beaning, which also happened to fellow backup Brian Hoyer. "I was looking at the defense, and maybe it will help or maybe it won't."
As it turns out, Mallett kept his eyes on the prize, maintained his focus and completed the pass.
"I've never had that happen before," Mallett said. "I got the drill down now, though, so I think we're going to do all right."
Mallett's reps in training camp have been limited so far, which is to be expected for a third-string rookie, no matter what his potential might be. To that end, he has been doing a lot of side work, primarily concentrating upon his footwork.
"I'm working on my feet, just getting my feet right in the pocket, and when I have to escape the pocket, just make sure I stay on balance after I move and after I throw the ball," he said. "I'm trying to get everything where it's boom, boom, boom in chronological order and thinking fast."
Mallett said it's not about being faster.
"It's just moving my feet the right way," he said. "There's a certain technique to it, not just movement."
The Patriots made a few roster moves Friday, signing defensive end Mark Anderson as a veteran free agent and releasing first-year defensive lineman Marlon Favorite.
Anderson (6-4, 255) is a veteran of five NFL seasons with the Chicago Bears (2006-10) and Houston Texans (2010). He originally joined the NFL as a fifth-round draft choice of Chicago out of Alabama in 2006. He played four games with Chicago and 11 with the Texans last year, and his claim to fame is a 12-sack season as a rookie with the Bears.