How Did The New England Patriots React To Clinching The AFC East?

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Dec 14, 2014; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots safety Duron Harmon (30) intercepts a pass by Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill (not pictured) during the second quarter at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports

Duron Harmon

(On his interception)
“So I just wanted to make sure I was over the top of the under coverage and it was a high throw and I just made sure I caught it and then everybody did a great job of blocking for me leading me up on the sideline.”

(On if he thought he was going to score a touchdown on the interception after Tavon Wilson’s block)
“I thought I was when he blocked him, but then there was somebody else right there, so that hurt a little bit, not being able to score, but still a great play.”

(On if it felt good to have the defense generate a couple of turnovers)
“Definitely, because they’re game changers, man. They change the mood of team, the fans, and it’s just good to get them.”

(On the recognition the defense is starting to receive for the strong performances)
“I think we’re just playing well. We’re finally all coming together. I mean, everybody’s just doing their job and that’s what it all comes down too and when you got 11 people out there and really tone it in and do their job, we can have days like this.”

Chandler Jones

(On being back out there for the first time in a while)
“I felt great. The coaches did a great job of mixing me up and switching in-and-out with different guys. It also felt really good to be back out there with my teammates.”

(On pacing his return to the field)
“I was just listening to what Coach Belichick told me and the doctors and the trainers, taking it a day at a time. I know you guys heard Bill say we’ll take it day-by-day-by-day, and that’s what we were doing. Like I said, it felt good to be back out there with my teammates. Just a few months ago I was on crutches. So for me to be out there running with my team, I got a little emotional, but it felt good to be out there.”

(On the big plays of the day)
“Akeem [Ayers], he’s a great addition. Like I said previously, [I’m a] huge fan of Akeem. He does some great things for us to help our team and hopefully he can keep doing that as we move forward. [Kyle Arrington had a] huge play for our defense, our offense, and for our team as a whole. That happened early in the game and Jamie Collins had a huge block. For Kyle to have the ability to pick up the ball and scoop and score, that was a huge momentum swing and put us up 7-0 early.”

Brandon LaFell

(On the impact of Jonas Gray in the third quarter)
“That guy came in running like he was possessed. A guy that’s had a big game and he’s been on the bench for a few weeks, but when he got his chance tonight he came out here and showed up.”

(On if Gray’s performance is an example of the Patriot Way)
“Stay ready. Stay ready. That’s the way we do it around here. Stay ready; you never know when your name is being called, but when it [does] get called, make plays.”

(On Brady’s 17-yard run in the third quarter)
“It’s crazy because I actually told him, ‘If you break one today, you get down.’ And he was like, ‘No, I’m going to try and run somebody over.’ He always jokes around like that and he actually did it. It was kind of good; it was in slow motion, but it was good.”

Devin McCourty

(On winning the AFC East division for the sixth straight year)
“Obviously, each year that is our first goal. I think everything starts with winning your division, especially going against a team that beat us earlier this year, so we wanted to come out and get a win and we wanted to come out here and we wanted to win big. Going down there and losing Week 1; we’ve been waiting all season to get back and play this game, so I thought we did a great job in the second half of playing good football and executing.”

(On how satisfying it was for the defense to hold the Dolphins to 13 points)
“It’s big. Coach Flores [safeties coach Brian Flores] said to us in the safety room the key right now is for us to keep getting better defensively and not to worry about stats and all that, but each time we step out onto the field we need to get better as a defense. So to come out and play another good game defensively, which is always important holding teams, points-wise; if we hold a team to 13 points, there’s a high chance our offense is going to go out there and get 14 or more each game. So it’s a good job and we’ve got to continue to do that.”

(On the defense’s big plays turning into points on offense)
“That’s what we’ve been living on earlier this season. The last couple of weeks we fell off from getting the takeaways. I thought we did a better job today and then we had another one on the ground that we probably should have got. So we know if we can turn the ball over and get the ball back to our offense, they’re going to score. It’s going to be three or seven [points], probably 95 percent of the time, so we just got to continue to do that.”

(On the importance of getting defensive end Chandler Jones back into the lineup)
“It’s huge. [Chandler’s] played great football all year and it was killing him being sidelined. Every time we were out there and having fun; I mean you guys see him play, he has the most fun on the team, really, when we’re out there, so it was really good for him to get back out there. He made plays like he has done all year when he’s been out there. Another key guy on our defense and having him back healthy is huge.”