|11.01.10 at 12:36 pm ET|
Patriots defensive lineman Vince Wilfork stopped by to visit with Dale & Holley at Gillette Stadium on Monday morning as part of WEEI’s Patriots Monday, one day after a 28-18 victory over the Vikings. To hear the interview, go to the Dale & Holley audio on demand page.
Wilfork was emotional after the Patriots stuffed the Vikings on fourth-and-goal just before the end of the first half. “All year we say we want to play well in the red area, goal line we want to be good, and short yardage we want to be good,” Wilfork said. “So, a great opportunity for us right there to step up. We had one earlier, a third-and-goal, and I still don’t think he scored, but it is what it is. So, we had another chance to come back and make a stop, especially on fourth down. You know what? The guys did a real good job on that play, just basically swarming to the ball, getting to the ball ‘ like I said, we knew [Adrian Peterson] was going to get it ‘ and just walked away. They didn’t come up with any points. We walked in to halftime feeling pretty good about that defensive stand.
“It’s just something we work on,” Wilfork added. “Through training camp, that was a point of emphasis. Even now, short yardage, red area, it’s always a point of emphasis for us. We were kind of confident going in and being down there, I don’t care how close they were to the goal line. We were pretty confident as a unit, to be down there. We came up with the big stop. It’s always exciting, when you put so much time into something and you succeed. And that was the case yesterday.”
Wilfork had high praise for cornerback Devin McCourty, who had an interception Sunday. Said Wilfork: “He’s a student of the game, man. I tell you what, that guy, the way he prepares and the way he practices ‘ he prepares in practice like he’s been in this game a long time. Sometimes it’s hard to see he’s only a rookie. But he is. But at the same time, it’s like, you see him at work, you see him at practice doing his thing, you see him after practice in the film room ‘ all these guys, not just Devin. They take it upon themselves to be the best they can be, because they know they have a lot of people counting on them.
“They hear, trust me, all of us hear how crappy we are, or how crappy we were going to be,” Wilfork continued. “We all hear that through the grapevine. We all hear that. I think guys just take it upon themselves not to let each other down out there. And it’s been working. And it’s going to continue to work, because we’re going to keep our head down, we’re just going to be going one day at a time, one foot in front of the other, and just keep grinding it out. Because it’s a long season. The schedule’s going to get harder. It’s going to get tougher. Opponents are going to get tougher. Just keep grinding it out, man. At the end of the day we want to look back when it’s all over and see what we have accomplished. But right now we don’t have time to sit back and see what we have accomplished ‘ 6-1 won’t get us anywhere. right now. That’s not our goal, 6-1. Our goal is to be a lot further.”
|11.01.10 at 12:21 pm ET|
Following is a transcript of the interview, in which Brady discusses what makes Bill Belichick such a good coach, if he misses Randy Moss, Brett Favre‘s chinstrap, Brady’s next haircut, and more. To listen, visit the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
Great job stealing signals, you guys are good at that. That’s what I heard.
I know, I know. It’s good to go out there and get a tough win at home. I said after the game, they’re a very talented team. They had 10 Pro Bowlers last year and it’s basically the same team. It was a battle, it went four quarters. We just made a few more plays than they did.
You’re the only 6-1 team in the NFL. Are you the best team?
Well, I think we’ve won in different ways. I think that’s what I’m probably happy about. We’ve been down in the fourth quarter, we’ve protected leads, we won on the road, we won on a Monday night game in Miami, which has always been tough to do. We’re such a long way from where we need to be, though. I will say that. I don’t think anybody on our team goes in there and thinks we’ve got all the answers.
There’s certainly things we need to improve on and get better at. Our offensive performance in the first half again wasn’t very good. We played much better in the second half. We’ve got plenty of football left and plenty of ways to get better as a team.
What is the benefit to your team when vanilla Bill [Belichick] lets nothing distract you from the matter at hand, preparation and execution on Sunday?
They have a heck of a team. They were in the NFC championship game last year with one play away from being in the Super Bowl. So, I wouldn’t say they don’t know how to do it or they don’t know how to win. We just do things differently.
Every coach has his own style. Our coach, we know his style. You guys know his style. How he is with the media is, to a certain degree, the way he is with the players. He’s never too up, he’s never too down. He never really lets anything get in the way of what we’re trying to accomplish. And there’s a lot to be said for that.
I like to think we have a pretty tough, smart team, and that’s what he’s been trying to build. I think a lot of guys have taken his coaching, and I think that’s been a very fun part to this season for the players. What he comes in and says is usually the way it plays out in the game. There’s no better coaching a player can have than a coach who goes in there on Wednesday and tells you the way the game’s going to go, and that’s how it happens on Sunday.
|11.01.10 at 9:30 am ET|
“You’re beating the best of the best,” Esiason said. “You can’t say right now that the New England Patriots aren’t the best in the AFC. Their record not only amplifies that, but the teams that they’re beating tells you that. Because they’ve beaten some of the best teams in football.”
Esiason said he’s not concerned that the Patriots will have a letdown next Sunday when they play the lowly Browns in Cleveland.
“The Patriots aren’t a normal team,” he said. “They don’t seem to get too caught up in everything that’s going on around them. I guess the coach does a pretty good job of keeping a lid on it. He’s not [Jets coach] Rex Ryan sitting there telling you that they’re the best team in football. He’s not [Buccaneers coach] Raheem Morris trying to tell his team, his fan base that they’re the best team in the NFC. He just kind of goes about his daily routine and his business, and I think the players kind of follow that. I don’t necessarily know that I could ever remember a time where the Patriots didn’t beat somebody that they were supposed to beat.”
Asked about Brett Favre‘s press conference Sunday that has drawn criticism for Favre’s eagerness to talk about himself and his injuries, Esiason said: “Brett’s got a lot on his plate, man. I think any of us who played the game completely appreciate who he is as a football player. I love the fact that he came back this year, because he does create stories, he does create drama. For those of us in the media, it makes it easy for us to talk about Brett. At the end of the day, I hear where you’re coming from. I think most fans are probably tired of it. I think most people who cover the team probably are tired of it. And I understand it can be nauseating at times.”
|11.01.10 at 8:42 am ET|
|11.01.10 at 7:32 am ET|
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Monday morning as part of WEEI’s Patriots Monday. Check this blog later in the morning for a transcripts of the conversation. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
With the Patriots beating the Vikings on Sunday to improve to 6-1, Brady said he likes how this team has shown it can win in a variety of ways.
“I think we’ve won in different ways. I think that’s what I’m probably happy about,” he said. “We’ve been down in the fourth quarter, we’ve protected leads, we won on the road, we won on a Monday night game in Miami, which has always been tough to do. ‘¦ We’re such a long way from where we need to be, though. I’ll say that. I don’t think anybody on our team goes in there and thinks we’ve got all the answers.”
Vikings receiver Randy Moss was highly complimentary of Bill Belichick and the Patriots after the game. Brady said he understands why Belichick has that affect on players. “Every coach has his own style,” Brady said. “Our coach, we know his style. You guys know his style. How he is with the media is, to a certain degree, the way he is with the players. He’s never too up, he’s never too down. He never really lets anything get in the way of what we’re trying to accomplish. And there’s a lot to be said for that.
“I like to think we have a pretty tough, smart team, and that’s what he’s been trying to build. I think a lot of guys have taken his coaching, and I think that’s been a very fun part to this season for the players. What he comes in and says is usually the way it plays out in the game. There’s no better coaching a player can have than a coach who goes in there on Wednesday and tells you the way the game’s going to go, and that’s how it happens on Sunday.”
|11.01.10 at 12:26 am ET|
FOXBORO — Tom Brady extended his regular season home winning streak to 24 games in games he’s started on Sunday as the Patriots beat the Vikings, 28-18, at Gillette Stadium. Thanks to Patriots P.R., here were his post-game comments.
Q: How does it feel to be 6-1?
TB: It feels great. We won. It was a tough battle out there. They’ve got a damn good team and we just kept fighting. We made some big plays there in the second half. It’s good to win. It’s good to beat good teams. I think you leave a game like this [against] a team that has as many talented players as they have’¦it was a battle. I hope [Brett] Favre is ok.
Q: Can you talk about your touchdown to Brandon Tate and how you got out of that trap?
TB: I was looking for Wes [Welker] and then I came back to Brandon. Brandon had just wheeled and went up the sideline and made a great play to uncover. I just caught a glimpse of him as I turned out of it and threw it up there. He was wide open and he made a great catch and a great run. He’s so dangerous in the open field. He’s tough to tackle. It was great to see the back of his jersey running. That was pretty sweet. Read the rest of this entry »
|11.01.10 at 12:14 am ET|
FOXBORO — In the wake of his team’s 28-18 win over the Minnesota Vikings, Bill Belichick gave credit to his team’s unity and their ability to make big plays. Here, thanks to the Patriots P.R. department, were his comments.
BB: I really feel good about that win. I’m really proud of our football team. Those guys did a great job. Offensively, we had some big drives there after their first [drive]. Minnesota went up 7-0. Then we answered that with a long drive. Then at the end of the game when they came back to make it 21-18, we went the length of the field again to get points on the board and use up a lot of clock. We made a few plays on defense when we had to. It was just one of those games where Minnesota is a good football team. They certainly gave us a lot of problems, but fortunately we were able to hang in there and come out at half time in decent shape and then make a few plays there in the second half to win. It’s a great job by our players. They really had a great week of preparation. They worked hard this week and the things that we wanted to do, for the most part in the second half we did. I felt like that was a big factor in us winning the game: players being able to execute the plays we needed at the right time.
Q: Have you been impressed with your team’s mental toughness this year?
BB: At times I think we’ve done a lot of good things. At other times, not as good as we’d like to do ‘ not as consistent. We need to still work on everything, but we’ve done enough to win a few games so that’s good. But we’ve still got a long way to go. We’ve got a lot of work to do.
Q: Can you talk about the adjustments in the second half to help the running game?
BB: I think you’ve got to give the coaches ‘ the offensive coaches ‘ a lot of credit. They made some adjustments there. Players blocked and our runners ran and broke some tackles. They just did a good job. There’s no magic wand. Read the rest of this entry »
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