And because this is one of the first bits of grammar wisdom offered by "Oxford," that will be our lesson for today.
In grammar terminology, a phrase is a constituent of a sentence that plays a specific role in that sentence — that of noun, verb, adverb, adjective or preposition. In, "Cats don't play fetch," the "cats" is a noun and it's also a noun phrase.
In, "My cat plays fetch," "my cat" is a noun phrase. So basically, the phrase is a part of speech with or without any determiners or modifiers that go with it. A verb phrase might be "fetch," "have fetched," "could have fetched," etc.