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Wilfork: Colts and Patriots remains a rivalry game, regardless of the records and who is playing

12.01.11 at 6:14 pm ET

FOXBORO — According to Vince Wilfork, it doesn’t matter that Peyton Manning isn’t under center for Indianapolis and the Colts are 0-11 coming into the game. He says the rivalry between the Patriots and Colts is always there — just like it was in 2008 when it was Matt Cassel at quarterback for New England.

“Oh yeah, absolutely, absolutely,” he said. “You can go back and just see the games we played. Even though, like I said, there’€™s an injury factor, but we’€™ve had that too with Cassel. That’€™s something you have to deal with. I’€™m pretty sure it’€™s tough but hey, it won’€™t stop us. We won’€™t allow that to be an excuse for us.

“It’€™s a rivalry game,” he added. “We’€™re not looking at the record; we’€™re looking at a Colts team that, over the years, always played us tough. Guys get injured all the time, you play with injuries all the time, you play with key players sometimes that aren’€™t out [there], so we’€™re not looking at that as an issue for us. We’€™re looking at how well we can play as a football team, the New England Patriots, how well we can play on Sunday. That’€™s what it’€™s going to be all about: who can play the best football on Sunday.”

Defensively, the Patriots have shown improvement over the last four weeks, but Wilfork says that as a group, they are not content with where they are.

“I think you can ask any football team or any professional team, ‘€˜Are you satisfied with where you are?’€™ and you’€™re never satisfied, but you have to keep striving. You definitely have to, to be the best you can be ‘€“ individually and as a team,” Wilfork said. “If you just look at film on yourself and critique yourself, it makes the team better. The last thing you want to do is go out there and put the team in a situation where they can’€™t trust you. That’€™s one thing we preach around here is, ‘€˜Make sure you’€™re doing your job because the guy next to you is depending on you.’€™ When we do that, things work out great, but when we don’€™t, we have problems; it’€™s a breakdown.

“Each day, find something you can get better at and it starts with yourself. Don’€™t look at the big picture; take care of the little things, the little technique stuff, the little conditioning, whatever it may be. That’€™s small because the small stuff always takes care of the big things and that’€™s one thing we’€™ve been doing.”

Read More: Matt Cassel, Peyton Manning, Vince Wilfork,



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