Tim Tebow: 'I felt pretty good' in first Patriots camp practice

Tim Tebow had a rough day throwing the ball in his first training-camp practice with the New England Patriots. But he caught a short toss during a screen-passing drill.

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Tebow's future with the Patriots, if he has one, might depend on that kind of versatility rather than his quarterbacking skills. And the team's release of tight end Aaron Hernandez, his former University of Florida teammate, actually could help Tebow's chances.

Tebow, who's 6-foot-3 and 245 pounds, has the size to play tight end and H-back, but he said he only has been in the quarterback room during positional meetings with the Patriots. He departed, however, from his insistence that he only wanted to play that position.

"I'm going to do what coach (Bill Belichick) asks me to do," he said.

Tebow also took snaps in 11-on-11 drills; he completed 6 of 11 passes and had one intercepted by defensive end Chandler Jones.

Late in the practice, Tebow took off on a long run along the left side, and the crowd cheered.

"I felt pretty good out there," Tebow said. "I felt like I made some good decisions. I've got to keep improving every single day. We'll go watch the film and we'll get better from it, but I felt good about the practice."

Hernandez and Tebow were college stars as teammates for three years. They were reunited when the Patriots signed Tebow on June 11, but it was short-lived after the team released Hernandez on June 26. Tebow publicly commented for the first time Friday on his friend's arrest in a murder case.

"It's heartbreaking and sad," Tebow said, "and all my thoughts and prayers go out to all the families that were involved."

Tebow declined to answer the other two questions he was asked about Hernandez -- whether or not he was shocked and if he had any contact with Hernandez since the murder.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.