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Gerard Warren is a student of Bill Belichick and Charles Darwin

08.09.11 at 8:39 pm ET

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FOXBORO — Now entering his 11th NFL season, Gerard Warren has been around long enough to know his responsibilities as an NFL defensive lineman.

If you’re not strong and agile, you’re going to get pushed around and intimidated in the trenches.

And that is probably why Pats head coach Bill Belichick was so willing to have him back in a crowded group of D-linemen in camp this summer. He knew Warren – once voted as one the Top 100 players ever in Florida high school football – could handle all the competition without it getting to him.

“Only the strong will survive,” Warren said after Tuesday’s final full practice before Thursday’s preseason opener against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Gillette Stadium.

So we can assume he’s not intimidated by Albert Haynesworth, Andre Carter, Shaun Ellis, Mike Wright, Mark Anderson, Myron Pryor, Ron Brace,Eric Moore, Steve Williams, Kyle Love and Vince Wilfork. Even for a four-man front, that’s a lot of bodies to contend with for a roster spot.

As a matter of fact, Wilfork’s friendship was one big reason he decided to come back to New England, as was the 28-21 playoff loss to the Jets last January.

“It didn’t finish the way we wanted it to but I know the purpose and the direction this team wants to go and I want to be a part of it,” Warren

What is it about New England Warren likes so much?

“Preparation, attention to detail, camaraderie and the will to not give in,” Warren said. “Just chemistry, to be able to feed off what they do well and they feed off what you do well, and be able to mix together and make a masterpiece.”

Warren just turned 33 in late July but feels the some of the time off from the lockout will do guys like him some good, especially when he’s going to battle in the trenches as a defensive end.

“A lot better. The time off works good, helped the body heal a little bit. I wish there could’ve been a little bit more football conditioning. But it’ll get back with the way they have practices going.”

Warren is someone who feels these preseason games will mean a little bit more, particularly in light of the big numbers of D-linemen in camp.

“The approach now I guess of preseason is almost like a regular season game in the sense of trying to limit the mental errors and go out and get prepared so you just have to focus and pay more attention to small details now,” Warren said.

Read More: 2011 training camp, Bill Belichick, football, Gerard Warren



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