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Patriots Locker Room Quotes - 11/10/2008

G Logan Mankins

(On the Jets defense)

"I think the reason that the Jets are winning a lot more games this year is because of their defense. They're much improved from last year. They're playing very well."

(On preparing to play against nose tackle Kris Jenkins)

"You just go in there and hit him as hard as you can, and that that's enough. Sometimes it is and sometimes it isn't. You hope sometimes that he'll take himself out of the play."

(On whether the short week poses more of a mental than a physical challenge)

"We're pretty sore after every game so we're used to that. Getting back into the game-planning this soon just quickens the turnaround. That's the hardest part."

(On the schedule for the short week)

"Luckily, it's against the Jets so we're kind of familiar with them. At least it's not against somebody that we've never played before."

(On the success of the running game)

"It's going good right now. Hopefully, we have it this week. I think we're getting the guys blocked; we're blocking the right guys. The running backs are running hard and they're breaking tackles. If they're breaking tackles, it means that we're getting a lot of yards."

(On pass protection in front of Matt Cassel)

"I think over the last couple of weeks we're showing a great deal of improvement. We're still not perfect, but I think, as long as you're improving every week, it's going to continue to get better. As long as we protect him, we'll win games."

(On how much he enjoyed the 19-play drive against the Bills)

"At the end of it, I was starting to get a little winded. That was a long drive. I didn't know it was 19 plays until I came off. I think that told me why I was so tired. But that's good, it chews up the clock. It killed the game pretty much and ended the game so that's really nice when that happens."

(On whether the team has re-invented itself this year from last year)

"The last few weeks, we've had a lot of drives that were 10 [plays] or more. It's not like last year when we'd just throw it deep and score touchdowns so we've got to make long drives like that right now."

(On the defense's appreciation for the 19-play drive)

"Of course they like long drives; we like them, too. We like keeping those guys fresh so they can run to the ball and rush the quarterback. If they're not tired, they're going to play better."

(On how the Jets' defense has improved from Week 2 until now)

"Their run defense is playing very well. They're getting after the quarterback better now. They're causing a lot of turnovers; a lot of sacks; a lot of strip-sacks. They're doing that very well right now and that's going to be a challenge."

LB Pierre Woods

(On filling in for Adalius Thomas on Sunday)

"I'm just trying to do my job. That's all it was. That's why they put me out there: to do your job, and that's what I did."

(On whether 'doing your job' is a mantra in the Patriots' locker room)

"You're supposed to do your job. That's what you're here for. That's what you get paid for. You go in there, know what you're doing and it's just like preseason when I was out there playing when Mike [Vrabel] was out, AD [Thomas] was out. You just try to pick up where you left off."

(On what he's learned from watching Adalius Thomas play)

"I've learned a lot from Adalius [Thomas], Mike [Vrabel], Rosevelt [Colvin], Junior [Seau], all of those guys. Like I said, I'm a like a sponge; I continue to soak up knowledge."

DL Jarvis Green

(On how the team is dealing with the possibility of playing without linebacker Adalius Thomas)

"We can't do anything about it. It is a tough loss. Losing Adalius [Thomas], he is a key to this defense but we have to move on and get ready for the Jets."

(On how hard it is to adjust when a guy like linebacker Adalius Thomas gets injured)

"It happens and it is a part of the game. When you lose a great guy…look at [Matt] Cassel. He is performing and getting better each week after losing Tom Brady. It is the same thing on defense. If we lose a guy, we have to put another guy in his place. He has to be prepared and ready."

*(On if there is more attention to detail when there is a short week to prepare) *

"A lot of it has to do with the mental part, not the physical part but just knowing what they have to do. Watching the [New York] Jets and seeing the way they perform. The way Thomas Jones runs we know we have to be ready to stop the run. Even with [Leon] Washington backing him up. Look at their defense - they are playing phenomenal. They only gave up three points [to the St. Louis Rams]."

(On how much the New York Jets have improved since the last time they faced them)

"A lot. They have been putting up points. They are a high-scoring offense. Their defense is playing well. We know it is going to be a lot harder this week than the first time we played them."

(On if quarterback Brett Favre seems more comfortable since the last time they faced him)

"Definitely, he is making plays and getting familiar with the system. He has the offense working with the things he has to do. The biggest thing for him is that they have been running the ball very well."

CB Ellis Hobbs III

(On how the secondary is improving)

"I feel like we are just making progress. We are continually getting better each week. The season generally is always a progress where you are either going to be moving forward or backward. I think right now we are doing a good job of using the momentum play after play and building on it."

(On why it seems whenever they get interceptions they comes in bunches)

"I think it is more of 'when it rains it pours.' It's just about having a knack of being around the ball. We always joke in practice that if we have a chance to get our hands on the ball during practice then something good is going to happen in the game. I think it is just transitioning over to the game from our practice habits."

(On what went through his mind when he saw the score from the New York Jets game against the St. Louis Rams yesterday)

"It's potent. Those guys have an explosive team. They have so many good skill players across the board on offense and defense. How those guys are just able to create plays. You don't necessarily have to design things for them. They are that good, as far as athletic skill and skill players, that they can make plays themselves."

(On if the New York Jets have improved since the last time they faced them)

"Most definitely, not only them but our division. Throughout the league in the AFC and NFC. I think November is always a crucial month where teams are getting better or getting worse. They [New York Jets] are definitely getting better."

(On if quarterback Brett Favre seems more comfortable since the last time they faced him)

"Yeah, not that they simplified it for him [Brett Favre] but they are not doing as many things as the [New York] Jets have done in the past probably by his request. It is allowing him to play 'Favre Football'. Make plays but go out and play within the system."

(On if he is amazed by how the team can pick up the slack when guys get injured)

"Am I am amazed? I was never amazed. We prepare ourselves in a way if the next man goes down then the next man better be ready. In training camp and through the preseason, when you see guys in different positions doing different things, some guys are taking more reps that normally don't; those are the times that we prepare for situations like this. When guys do get hurt, that next guy is ready to step in. The most important thing is that those guys know that we are not asking them to go out and make spectacular plays but just do what the role requires."

LB Mike Vrabel

(On the possibility of being without linebacker Adalius Thomas)

"He is a guy, like a lot of guys, that can play a lot of different positions and play them well. It would be though. He is leader and veteran guy that plays well. We just have to find guys to step up."

(On what makes the team able to rebound from players getting injured)

"We talk about this all the time. It is just our focus with three days has to be on the [New York] Jets. We are going to have 11 guys out there. It is unfortunate that [Adalius Thomas] is not going to be there this week but we have three days to concentrate on the Jets."

*(On what improvement he sees from the New York Jets offense) *

"I don't think they [New York Jets offense] are doing as much shifting and motioning. I think he [Brett Favre] is just out there just playing and taking what the defense give him. They are running the football really well. He doesn't have to. You see one week where he throws it 40 times and one week it is 19 or 20. I think they are really balanced."

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