Q: How is camp going so far and what has it been like working with such a versatile defensive line?
CL: It's been going really well. We have a lot to build on, we have a lot of work to do, but we're trying to focus on taking things one day at a time. I think my focus is just trying to be as coachable as I can be and do whatever I'm asked to do and do my job, whatever it may be, each and every single day.
Q: As this is the first time you have been through a team change, what's it like getting used to a new team culture and a new way of doing things?
CL: Well, I played for a lot of head coaches. I was on one team, but I played for a lot of head coaches, so my mindset is always just to come to work and whatever I'm asked to do, do it and have an open mind. Certainly, coming to a new place is exciting, but I've been through change before and these guys here have done a great job welcoming myself and all the new guys. It's a great group to be a part of.
Q: What have you as a defense been trying to do since the first padded practice last weekend?
CL: I know personally, speaking for me, it's just working on the little things every day. You don't get a lot of chances over the summer to go over the runs, and the run game is such a fundamental part of your game, it should be the first part of your game. Stopping the run is important to me, and we're trying to build on little habits that will become very important to us one day at a time.
Q: What kind of conversations do you have with Bill Belichick on the field about what you're trying to accomplish?
CL: Coach [Belichick] is [a] great coach. He knows the game, he knows defense, he knows defensive line play, so it's always nice to have that as another voice as a head coach. That's not the case everywhere, and he just knows football.
Q: Bill Belichick mentioned you [are] getting more looks on the interior defensive line – is that a spot you haven't played in as much?
CL: There's nowhere here that I've been put that I haven't done before. I've played up and down the line before, and I have an open mind as far as what I'm asked to do. I'll just continue to line up where I'm asked to, try to be fundamentally sound, disruptive, and play hard.
Q: What's it like playing in your dad's hometown?
CL: It's cool. For one, it's a great sports city, you know that. I'm from Virginia and I know that Boston is a great sports city, that reputation kind of carries. Just seeing it first hand and seeing it with all the fans out here, certainly having some family up here, my pops being from Charlestown, it's interesting. It's pretty cool.
Q: Can you describe your relationship with defensive line coach Brendan Daly and how that's helped your adjustment here?
CL: Yeah, B. Daly [Brendan Daly] is a great coach. I had him when I was a younger player in St. Louis. I had him for a couple of years there, so he knows me, I know him. It certainly helps the transition. He just knows football and he does a great job. All these coaches do a great job of coaching the scheme, the details and the fundamentals. That's what B. Daly is all about. He coaches you like you want to be coached, he's communicative and knows the defense and he's always there to help you get better.
Q: How would you describe the locker room culture of this football team?
CL: The guys in this locker room, it's obvious why they're here. They're team players. Everybody competes, works hard and takes it one day at a time. That's what I see, and I'm just trying to do the best I can to fit into that group. Like I said, as a new guy, the other guys in the locker room have done a great job welcoming all the new guys, including myself. Just good people.
Q: When you played for Al Groh, did the name Bill Belichick ever come up, and in what regard?
CL: It came up a lot. We had stripes on our socks in college. Our uniforms were just like the Patriots, so it just gives you an idea. We had some of the same terminology and that sort of thing.
Q: Did you notice the influence Bill Belichick had on Al Groh?
CL: Obviously, all those coaches have a bond from coaching together. Coaches influence coaches and certainly there is some carryover, but it's a new experience.
Q: Do you understand now why Bill Belichick has such a strong influence on other coaches?
CL: Well, Coach [Belichick] is a great coach; his track record speaks for itself. I always come to work respecting my coaches and trying to do what I'm asked to do. Getting a chance to be coached by Coach [Belichick], it's a great opportunity.
Q: Have you always been one to ask questions and try to soak up as much as you can in these situations?
CL: I think asking questions is one of the biggest components to learning, and there's a lot for me to learn. I'm asking a lot of questions every day, I'm never shy about asking questions.
Q: What's your take on the tight ends group, most notably Rob Gronkowski and Martellus Bennett, and how dangerous they can be together?
CL: They're two elite players and obviously, from what I've seen in practice, they work hard, they compete and they hone their game every day. They're two elite players, so when you do that and you're already one of the best in the game, it's a recipe for success.