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Logan Mankins: Spygate taunts don’t get under my skin

01.17.13 at 1:47 pm ET
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FOXBORO — Logan Mankins has never been one to mince words, and so when a reporter asked him Thursday morning if Spygate taunts from opposing players — like the one from Ravens linebacker Brendan Ayanbadejo earlier this week that came via Twitter — ever get annoying, Mankins was quick to respond.

‘€œNah, that was a long time ago,’€ responded Mankins.

The reporter followed up, asking if it got under his skin at all.

‘€œNo, but you are,’€ responded Mankins with a smile.

The retort is par for the course for Mankins, who always plays with an edge. (Quarterback Tom Brady once said with a grin that the occasionally feisty Mankins ‘€œplays until the echo of the whistle.’€) The first time the Patriots and Ravens met this season, there was plenty of pushing and shoving between the two teams, and Mankins talked about why that was on Thursday.

‘€œI think we’€™re two emotional teams, so stuff happens out there,’€ he said. ‘€œYou just always have to be smart about it. A penalty just hurts your team, so you can take it a little ways — you just have to make sure you never take it too far.

‘€œThat’€™s the only way I know how to play and I’€™m going to keep doing it until they tell us we can’€™t.’€

Following are more highlights from his Thursday morning Q&A with the media.

What has it been like to have the continuity with Ryan Wendell at center on the offensive line this year?

‘€œOh yeah, definitely, it’€™s always nice to have your center there the whole season. Last year I think we had four different centers. It was a little bit different every week. He did a good job staying healthy for us. He’€™s done a good job preparing, playing, communicating, so he’€™s done a very good job.’€

How tough is Haloti Ngata as you get to see him up close and personal?

‘€œHaloti, he’€™s a very good player. I think everyone knows that. He does a lot of different things for them, he lines up everywhere. I think that’€™s one of the things that makes him very good, he’€™s very versatile for someone his size. He’€™s always a handful for whatever team’€™s playing them and we’€™ll have to do a good job against him.’€

Yesterday your teammates talked about how hard Tom Brady works despite his accomplishments. Do you become amazed at how hard he works and became a natural leader because of it?

‘€œYeah I think so. I think at any point in your career where you stop worrying about working on the little things, you’€™re not going to be as good. I think Tom understands that no matter how good he is, he needs to prepare like anyone else would that’€™s not at the same level as him. He’€™s going to work hard to make sure he’€™s ready.’€

Does his work ethic inspire the rest of the team to work just as hard?

‘€œWe are professional athletes, that’€™s our job. If you’€™re not working as hard as you can, you’€™re cheating yourself already. I think the coaches are going to notice that and you’€™re not going to be around here too long.’€

Read More: 2013 playoffs, Logan Mankins,
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