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Patriots Postgame Quotes

Posted Nov 21, 2011

New England Patriots players comment on their game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Gillette Stadium on Monday, November 21, 2011.

VINCE WILFORK, NOSE TACKLE

Q:Is that another step forward for your defense?

VW:It's a step in the right direction. Each week you get tougher and tougher. I think you have to be able to move forward and get better each week because the opponents get tougher, games get tougher. Later in the season, you have to be able to win ball games in November and December, so that's where we are. It wasn't perfect out there, but at the same time, we made a lot of plays tonight and it's very exciting to give up just three points as a defense, which was very exciting. We put a lot of emphasis on coming out and attacking third down and certain situations and I think we just came up big. Turnover's helped. Sacks helped. Guys just doing their jobs – that's the main thing. Guys stepped up big when we needed it. We had some guys down where, coming into this game, guys knew we had to be out there and make plays. And they got through it with a lot of confidence – a lot of confidence and it showed tonight. You can't take anything away from these guys. They work hard and there is just so much trust. I mean, the commitment to this team is everything for us, and it showed tonight.

Q:You're getting huge plays from the edge guys, too. They've been great the past few weeks.

VW:Each week, you know, there is always someone coming up with big plays. That's what we need; we need guys to make plays to turn around a game. Sometimes it's going to be a tough game fought back and forth, where somebody is going to have to make a play. We don't know who that someone is, but I think we have enough guys that somebody can. It's not just one in particular; I think it's 11 guys that are out there and anybody we put in, we have a good feeling that they can make plays for us as a team. So tonight Julian [Edelman] stepped up big for us, especially on defense and special teams. He played huge. I think that he played a hell of a ball game and just seeing him out their running around on the defense that was a sight to see. You're talking about a guy that is going from offense to defense to special teams then back to defense. I mean, he put a lot into it and a lot of credit is going to that guy because he stepped up big for us.

Q:Do you feel like this is a defense that can take you deep into the playoffs?

VW:We are going to take it one game at a time, but I think we have the possibility of being a pretty good defense as long as we play well and get better each week. [We] can't get complacent; that's one thing we can't do. We can't sit back and say we only gave up three points and everything is all good, because it's not. We always have to work on little things. We'll look at this film and we'll see things that may be a problem in the future and we'll try to get better at those things. There's always something you can get better at. There's definitely always something you can get better at. It's a short week for us and we have to turn around and get it going tomorrow. We have to get it going tomorrow, get some film, get guys healthy, and just take care of ourselves and we're back on the road this week in Philly. But it starts tomorrow. This will be a quick turnaround for us, but that's what it's all about.

KYLE ARRINGTON, CORNERBACK

Q: Let's start off with your two interceptions.

KA: First of all, God is good. It's just being around the ball. We try to be a very opportunistic defense. When plays like that present themselves, you just capitalize on them. And if I could get in the end zone one of these times, that would be good, too.

Q: Your defense gave up three points. Every week you say your defense is getting better and better. How do you see yourself progressing?

KA: I think we are all pretty...we're not satisfied, but we like the direction that we are going. [If] we just keep preparing, stay focused and come out and play for each other and play hard like that for 60 minutes, I think we will be in pretty good shape down the road.

Q: Do you feel like beating the Chiefs like this proves something?

KA: I mean, [for] 60 minutes every Sunday - or in this case Monday night - we go out there [and] no matter who we play, we play as hard as we can. And we've got an extremely great test coming up next week versus the Eagles, so we are going to have to go out there and play another 60-minute game again.

Q: The defensive unit was out on the field a little more than the offense. Does that help you guys as far as you guys getting more playing time?

KA: It was a slow start in the game for the offenses in general, and that's on us; that's on the defense. It's on us to keep us in games. The offense builds the leads; it's on us to finish the game. And we just go out there and, like I said, we just try to give our all. It's a good feeling to go out there and play - I won't say perfect - but play a good 60 minutes of football.

Q: You had a pretty good track on Tyler Palko. What did you see that you liked?

KA: Being a left-handed quarterback, a lot of balls are going to come to our right - the side I'm on - so [I] just prepared and tried to keep out of his vision on a lot of his throws. He throws off his back foot a lot [and] balls sailed out a few times, so keep [out of] his vision and try to make a good break on it was the key. But I mean, credit to them; that's a good football team. They kept us on our toes with a lot of drives here and there, but credit to our coaches for making adjustments within the game.

Q: Has it been tough for you guys as a unit for the number of injuries you guys have had to get that cohesion that you need?

KA: In this profession, it's next man up, basically. Credit to our players; whatever their role there is, there's not a bigger role they would want. You always have to prepare like you'll be in there. You're always a play away. So, it's a lot of credit to the guys who are stepping up and playing a lot of snaps with us now.

Q: Do you feel like maybe in the long run that could help you - that everyone gets some experience now and then they'll have that when Devin McCourty and some others come back?

KA: Definitely, definitely. With everybody getting more experience now, then when Devin comes back, we will have just have that much more depth and that will speak a lot for us.

Q: Last couple weeks you guys have been getting some real key turnovers, how big can that be for a defense that was struggling early on?

KA: It's huge. Turnovers and points off turnovers - that decides a game a lot in most cases. Like I said previously, we try to be a very opportunistic defense, so when those opportunities present themselves we just have to jump on them.


ROB GRONKOWSKI, TIGHT END
(On whether he was going to get the spike off)
"I wasn't really thinking about it until right when I did it, so it just is what it is."

(On what he was discussing with the training staff)
"They were just asking me questions like they got to and if I was fine and everything. I was fine. I just got the wind knocked out of me a little bit, so I mean you know how that is when it happens."

ANDRE CARTER, DEFENSIVE END
(On the defense picking up the offense early on)
"I just think in general, sometimes during the season, things don't work out right for the offense and the defense has to support each other. And it can go vice versa, either way. But you have to understand this is a team concept, this is a team sport, so you always have to have each other's back, whatever adversity you go through."

(On Mark Anderson's performance)
"[Mark Anderson] is coming along real well. We complement each other. I think every week as we prepare for an opponent, we just constantly work off each other. At times they may be chipping me a little bit [laughs], he has an opportunity to win a one-on-one matchup and that's how it's supposed to be. So I'm very proud of him and he's doing well."

BRIAN WATERS, RIGHT GUARD
(On the slow start of the offense)
"We got off to a slow start, not the start we wanted to get off to but like every game we find our way and we were able to get into a rhythm. Defense did a great job keeping them out of the end zone and causing turnovers and special teams turned up big. This was a team effort when we don't start off well the rest of the team helps out until we can get back in the game."

WES WELKER, WIDE RECEIVER
(On victory)
"Yeah, it feels kind of nice. It wasn't pretty at the start and luckily we were able to come through and win at the end and that's what matters."

(On what the Chiefs were doing to cover him)
"I think a lot of it was just us and they did some different types of things and they had a good game plan for us and did a good job. We just had to roll with it and have some other people step up and we did and we were able to come away with the win."

(On why the offense sputtered in the first quarter)
"We just weren't out there executing the way we need to execute and play the way we need to play to move the ball. So, we just kind of got in a little bit of a funk at the start and luckily we were able to make some plays to get out of it and come away with the win. But, we got to start faster than what we did tonight."

(On finding openings in the defense)
"Yeah, I think they're always openings, but it's just a matter of us executing and playing well. They did a good job on defense and we got to come out and play better from the start - a lot better than what we did."

SHANE VEREEN, RUNNING BACK
(On how it feels to have his first career touchdown)
"It's fun. It's hard to explain, just because it's the NFL now. It's fun, I enjoyed it and we've got to get ready for next week."

(On if he had been itching to get out there)
"[Laughs] Yeah. I think anybody who's played football this long is itching to get out there when they haven't been out there for a while. So it was good to get out there. It was fun, I enjoyed it and it was a good team victory."

JAMES IHEDIGBO, SAFETY
(On an impressive defensive performance despite missing several starters)
"It's a testament to guys stepping up. It's great when you have the depth where key guys can go down and then you can have a performance like this on defense and especially in the secondary. Hats off to Kyle Arrington for having the performance that he did. And Phillip Adams, he played outstanding all game and ended up with a key interception down there in the red zone. And [Antwaun] Molden played great, too."

(On if turnovers can bring a defense together)
"Oh, of course. Any time you're playing a team where you have the mindset that you're going to dominate and going out there and actually doing it. Our offense is explosive and our goal on defense is to get them the ball as much as we can. When we go out and do that and you have big plays like that, it's great. Brings the defense close and it's a lot of energy."

PHILLIP ADAMS, CORNERBACK
(On the secondary not well known, but you think teams are starting to take notice)
"All we have to do is get better day after day, week after week, we just continue to get better. It really doesn't matter if they do or they don't. Every week we are going to go into practice and work hard regardless if they are going to give us respect or not."

(On the last couple of weeks the defense has had a lot of turnovers how big can that be)
"I feel everyone knows how big that is, it helps the offense with momentum and that's how big a turnover can be."

(On his interception)
"I just turned my head and the ball was there. I was playing in the right position where I was suppose to be and do, I am just glad I was there to make the play."

MARCUS CANNON, OFFENSIVE LINEMEN
(On being on the field and a chance to play)
"The coaching staff gave me a chance to play and it was awesome."

(On his illness and if it bothers him talking about it)
"You know whatever helps people, of course my story will always be there and I thank God everyday, I am blessed and there is no way of putting it behind you. I am just looking forward to playing football.

JULIAN EDELMAN, WIDE RECEIVER
(On his punt return for a touchdown)
"We held the gunners and our internal guys did a good job blocking their players. As a punt returner, you have to make someone miss and then get back to your return side so we executed the play really well."

(On playing with the defense)
"It's definitely a new experience but like I said, whatever Coach (Belichick) asks me to do, I'm going to go out there and try and do it."

(On moving forward from the distractions over the past few weeks)
"The team got a win, we executed a play in the special teams by finally getting a return (touchdown) and the defense played solid to hold the (Chiefs)."

ROB NINKOVICH, LINEBACKER
(On how the defense is improving from the start of the season)
"We've really been working hard over the past few weeks to improve, especially in the turnover ratio and give the ball back to our offense as much as possible during the game."

(On Kyle Arrington's excellent play in the secondary)
"Kyle is a great player. He's always in the right spots and he is having a great year. As long as he continues to keep on producing like that, we will keep on producing on defense."

(On Edelman playing with the defense)
"I loved him out there running around. He had a great punt return and its great to see him playing on defense. (Edelman) is a great athlete. He was a quarterback in college and came here as a receiver. He's playing defense now and returning punts. With some of the things that have happened in the secondary, with guys going down and others having to step up, he's done a great job in taking that role and going out there to do the best he can."

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