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Mike Vrabel Press Conference Quotes - 1/31/2008

Patriots LB Mike Vrabel addresses the media from the Patriots Super Bowl headquarters on January 31, 2008

(on being considered an offensive threat when he's with the offense)
"If you said when I catch the ball when I'm wide open, I think I can do that."

(on his versatility on offense and defense)
"Early on I played a lot of sports, played basketball, football and did track and just played tight end in high school and then I got to Ohio State and remember Coach Cooper saying, 'We have plenty of tight ends, we need defensive ends, so I never really played tight end after that. I always tried to work out with the quarterbacks, catch the ball, run routes and then that just evolved into the goal line package."

(on Tom Brady running for government office)
"I think Tom will probably stay out of the spotlight as much as possible at that point."

(on LB Tedy Bruschi saying Vrabel could be one of the best outside linebackers in the league if he played it more)
"We all speak pretty highly of each other. We all have a lot of respect for each other and where everybody comes from and the kind of careers some of us have had."

(on the importance of being called a great teammate)
"I think by having the respect of your teammates you've proven yourself on the field, you've proven yourself in the locker room and guys respect that. The media and fans, everybody, they're going to love you, but I think when the players truly appreciate what you do every week, it means a lot."

(on the Patriots team being so focused)
"We as a team and the players on this team try do the same thing every week. We try to go out there and execute under pressure and make the plays that are going to help us win."

(on former Patriots linebacker Andre Tippett being voted in the Hall of Fame)
"He's (Tippett) up for the Hall of Fame which I think is more than deserving, it's long overdue. He should be voted in. You can't really say, talk about outside linebackers without saying Lawrence Taylor and Andre Tippett. To me, this is a guy that rushed, covered, played against the run and put up a lot of great numbers when linebackers really weren't doing those types of things in the 80's. We get the media guide and I look at those numbers and I'm like I had a pretty good season, I'm still six sacks away or whatever from Tippett so it's like he really was a great player. He gave the fans of New England something to look forward to when they had a bad team. They knew they'd be watching a great player, a superstar player, and he's helped us out. I remember earlier when I got here he would work with us and work with the line, and the guys that rushed. I'm glad he got some attention and I hope people realize how good of a player he was."

(on buying into the Patriots system)
"It's a proven system, a proven method that works. You look at science and anything that has a formula, if that proves the work, then it's very easy to follow. It's a recipe that tastes good, and guys really don't want to change it much. Guys see that it's successful and even if it may not be the most popular way, it works for us."

(on running onto the field as a team at the Super Bowl in 2001)
"We had some different guys that were in and out of the lineup during the year and I don't know if it was the offenses turn or the defenses turn, but someone said, 'Let's go out as a team.' I think that theory is everything that embodies the team this year. After our rocky start and coming together with all the new free agents, it was pretty fitting. You see other teams come out together now, and you kind of look and say they got that from us back in 2001."

(on his initial reaction to accusations of the Patriots filming from the sideline in their week one match-up with the Jets)
"I think you're a little shocked, a little stunned. We were answering a lot of questions about our commitment and what we try to do as a player and how we prepare. People were asking a lot of questions that made you have to answer to your commitment level to the team and to the game. Guys put a lot of time, a lot of effort and a lot of hard work into the game and people would say how does it feel to be labeled a cheater. You wanted to stand up and knock the crap out of them but we had to deal with it. We fought through it as a team, we got through it together and we haven't looked back."

(on possibly going 19-0 and the historical significance)
"I don't know, I've never seen the historical side of it. The undefeated regular season is great but to me the Giants are just as undefeated as we are. They beat great teams all on the road and everyone else lost - the Bucs, the Cowboys, the Packers - they're all gone. For the Giants to be here, they have to be undefeated."

(on the Giants)
"We know they're a physical team, we know we have to play better than we did against them in December or we'll lose because they've gotten better. That's been the strength of their team and they've rallied behind that each week. They're getting better, have come together as a team, and there's a lot of confidence over there."

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