Quotable Quotes from the Patriots

Several members of the New England Patriots took to the mic to speak with the media yesterday regarding the Baltimore Ravens and the upcoming AFC championship game. Below are some of the more quotable quotes from Bill Belichick, Tom Brady, Jerod Mayo, and Vince Wilfork.

Bill Belichick (full transcript HERE)

Our team has worked hard this year; have to give a lot of credit to the players for all the obstacles that we’ve encountered and endured and that they played through. [We're] excited about the game; great challenge going up against the Ravens. It’s an outstanding football team.”

They [the Ravens] have a lot of good football players, they’re well coached, they have a good scheme, they’re a really hard team to prepare for. They have some truly great players on the defensive side of the ball, future Hall of Famers, guys that are just really dominant at their position and have been for a number for years, or in Ray [Lewis] and Ed [Reed]‘s case, about a decade. Offensively, of course Ray Rice has done a great job for them. They have a good, solid offensive line; group that has played together for awhile. [They're] getting a lot of production out of their tight ends, receivers, quarterback. Good depth at the running back position with Ricky Williams as well as Ray Rice. They’re really solid in the kicking game, good specialists.”

“He [Ed Reed]  probably covers more field back there as a single safety than most teams can cover with two. He’s got great instincts, he’s a tremendous player. Ray Lewis, everything he brings to the game, his playmaking ability, his leadership, his experience, his ability to get people around him to play better both by his communication and anticipation and leadership and football savvy on the field.”

I think you’d have to ask the other defenses about matching up on Hernandez and Gronkowski. We see them every day in practice and they’re hard to cover out there, believe me. But how other teams see them, you’d really have to talk to them. Again, we’re not really that concerned about what happened last week or some other week, we’re really focused on the Ravens now. Whatever we did or didn’t do in some other games, it is what it is. Some worked out well, some didn’t, but right now we’re just trying to put all the energy and preparation into the Ravens. ”

He’s [Vince Wilfork] been huge. Vince has had a great year for us. He’s had obviously a great career, had an outstanding year last year, but this year it’s even gone a step higher. He’s played a lot of plays. He’s become really an every-down player, not just a situational player. He’s been very productive for us in the running game, in the passing game, he’s made plays in pursuit. His interceptions are legendary, as well as his runbacks. From a leadership standpoint, again, he’s been outstanding.”

Patrick is a smart kid and really understands football concepts, works hard, very in tune to not only his job but what everybody else is doing. He’s been really good with Devin [McCourty]. We put Devin back there at free safety the last couple of weeks. Patrick’s communication and ability to help and kind of get the anticipation of certain coverages or adjustments that we might have to make and working with Devin. Those two guys have spent a lot of extra time together and it’s really paid off. Patrick is very team oriented like that, in terms of doing things to not only help himself but help his teammates and help the team.”

Tom Brady (full transcript HERE)

I think Coach Belichick does a great job of getting the team ready and understanding that this is a football game, something we’ve been doing here for the last six months. A big part of what we’ve done all year is really avoid the distractions and the things that come along with the hype and the build up of certain games, whether it’s a Sunday Night Football Game or Monday Night Football game or last week’s [playoff] game.”

He’s [Peyton Manning] a great friend of mine. I’m certainly hoping for the best. The NFL is a better place with a guy like Peyton Manning in it. I think we all appreciate the ability to go out there and play every week. Certainly nothing you take for granted because you never know — this could be your last day. To have the opportunity to play in a game like we’re playing in this week and prepare for a game like this is something that is exciting for all the players involved. When you don’t have that opportunity, it sucks. You sit at home and you watch and listen to every news station and sports station talking about the game. It’s great for us to be playing in it.”

[Do the Ravens not like you very much?]  “I’m not sure. I’m sure you can ask them those questions this afternoon. I have a lot of respect for them and their ability to play and perform under pressure. They’ve been in the playoffs the last four years and they’ve won playoff games in the last four years. They’re a tough team. What goes on off the field and the comments that guys make really has no bearing or impact on this game nor will it. A lot of my focus and attention is on what I need to do to be at my best this week for my teammates. Hopefully we go out there and play our best game.”

I think this is my sixth AFC Championship Game. I’ve been in a great place where a bunch of teammates have really committed to themselves and to each other to make it to this point. We’ve put a lot of work in. There has been a lot of practices and a lot of meetings and so forth. To get to this point is very challenging. Every team is talented. Every team has the same rules and there are 32 teams that start the year with the hopes of being in this position. The team that is going to win this weekend is the team that plays the best. There’s nothing that anyone will say or do before Sunday at 3 o’clock that will have an influence on the game other than the way you prepare and the way you rested and the commitment to practice that we bring to the table. The game can’t get here fast enough. There’s a lot of anxiousness leading up to the game. You think about the game; it’s the only thing really on your mind. Hopefully we can go out there and do a great job. I’m really looking forward to it.”

Jerod Mayo (full transcript HERE)

To be honest with you, I just try to go to work every day and work hard. I try to follow the example of Coach Belichick, Vince [Wilfork], Mr. Kraft. I just try to come in and do my job. They always talk about doing your job, and hopefully guys will follow.”

You know, you rarely see defensive linemen playing 90 percent of the snaps on the field and he’s [Vince Wilfork] one of those guys. I don’t want to say his weight on camera, but he’s a big guy – you all can see that. That’s very impressive in its own right. And at the same time, he has a ring. He’s won playoff games, so we can always draw from his experiences.”

He’s [Ray Rice] one of those guys that can do it all. He can catch the ball out of the backfield, he’s good in blitz pickup. He’s a small guy, but at the same time he’s strong. He always has his feet going, breaks a lot of tackles, so he’s a dangerous weapon for them. There’s a reason why he’s their leading receiver and leading rusher. You rarely see that. He’s a great player.”

Vince Wilfork (full transcript HERE)

[What is your response to Bill Belichick calling your interceptions and runbacks 'legendary'?] “A lineman’s dream. I think having the ball in your hands is a dream come true as a lineman. Too bad it wasn’t a touchdown, but I ended up falling on one in Washington. It’s been a fun year. It’s been a real fun year, it’s been exciting just to come to work and have fun and just watch this team grow. It’s been a blessing and we’re going to continue to grow. This team is a special team, it’s a special group. I think it’s easy when you get to come to work and have fun and just see guys work hard each day. It’s a blessing. We have to keep it up, though.”

[Discussing former University of Miami teammate Ed Reed] “Playmaking. I mean he’s always been that way, even at the University of Miami. I was young but I didn’t really understand how great he was. I knew he was good, but I didn’t see it until I got to the NFL and seeing him making the same exact plays and hear people talking about him. The guy is just one hell of a player, on and off the field. He knows how to go into a film room and break down film probably as well as a coach and then put it on the field. That’s the thing that he can do. He can put it on the field. I had a chance to witness it first hand and one of the plays that always sticks out in my mind is when we came up here to play BC [Boston College]. BC was leading actually and Matt Walters intercepted the ball and Reed just took it from him. He claimed that the guy gave it to him, but he took it from him and ran it back. And earlier that year, I think against Florida State – blocked punt with a separated shoulder. He’s going to give it his all. He’s just a smart, tough football player physically and mentally. He knows the game. He has a nose for the ball so I’m glad he’s not an offensive player. I’m pretty sure he can be on that side also because his ball skills are amazing.”

[Asked about what he sees that Joe Flacco does well on tape] “When he can throw the ball with a clean pocket. He has great poise in the pocket. He will stand in there and deliver a good football if he has the time. At times you see that and at times you don’t see that. He’s a tough quarterback, just looking at some of the hits he’s taken. He bounces right up, you have to tip your hat to him. He’s at his best when he can get everybody involved in the game, have a clear lane to throw down. Even without a good lane, he’s just one of those quarterbacks where he’s going to take his time and he’s going to be very poised. He’s going to stand in that pocket and deliver a good football even if he’s getting hit.”

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Tags: AFC Championship Game Baltimore Ravens Bill Belichick Jerod Mayo New England Patriots NFL Tom Brady Vince Wilfork

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