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Patriots Media Availability Transcripts 7/29

Patriots players TE Martellus Bennett, QB Jacoby Brissett, LB Jamie Collins, LB Dont'a Hightower and DE Rob Ninkovich addressed the media following Training Camp practice at Gillette Stadium on Friday, July 29, 2016.



(On how the competition felt without full pads)
"Every single day I've been here since OTAs it's been very competitive. Everyone here does their job so well and everyone's competing, so you just got to bring it every single day."

(On the increased competition and offense - defense interactions during practice)
"That's just football. It is what it is. I like guys that have an edge, and I think a lot of guys on this team have an edge. When they have that edge it makes you bring it up a notch, too, so everyone's just competing."

(On when and where he sees that edge)
"Everywhere. I mean, even in the cafeteria."

(On seeing and experiencing Tom Brady's competitiveness)
"Yeah, he's been competitive even when we're just working out, you know. It's fun because he plays at such a high level that you have to match that level. You know, oil and vinegar don't mix. You just want to make sure that you rise to the top when he rises to the top as well. 

(On his impressions of working with Jimmy Garoppolo so far)
"It's cool, just out there playing football."

(On the dynamics between he and Rob Gronkowski and Tom Brady)
"I think with Rob [Gronkowski], it's a little different from me. He's been with [Tom] Brady for so long, so they know each other's body language, and we move differently. A lot of people think the way [Rob Gronkowski and I] run routes is a lot different, so just understanding the body language, how I'm breaking my cuts and where I like the ball is different from where [Tom Brady] throws the ball to Rob. We're always talking about this, we're just trying to build as much chemistry as possible." 

(On working with Rob Gronkowski and be able to pick up some of each other's tendencies)
"That's really exciting. I was fortunate enough to play with Brandon Marshall for a long time and learn a lot of my game from him, and now to be with another great player like Rob [Gronkowski], he does so many different things well. When you watch tape, you know he's really good, but when you're right there next to him, you're like, 'Man, this guy is really good. Hey Rob, how did you do that? How did you do this? Man, show me that! Come to the side real quick and show me how you did that move.' It's just give and take. He asks me sometimes like, 'Hey man, you did this today. I liked that. Show me that.' So we're just working and trying to make each other better. I think that's what the whole tight end room is trying to do. Everyone is trying to build each other up so that we can add more to the repertoire and become better players."

(On if this is a place he can see himself sticking around for a while)
"Yeah, I mean, yeah I feel like that."



(On what it is like to be in the quarterback room with Tom Brady)
"It's great. We've got a great group and we just all help each other and try and get better each day."

(On if he sees plenty of intensity in Tom Brady)
"Definitely. We're still going out there and we're still competing against our defense, so we're trying to go out there and beat them anytime we get a chance to."

(On how much of the offense has been thrown at him thus far)
"It's learning every day. I won't stop learning, that's for sure."

(On how much of the playbook he has down so far)
"Each day is different, so I'm trying to get better each day."

(On how much he leans on Tom Brady and Jimmy Garoppolo)
"A lot. They've been through this so they've been a great asset to have. Our room has been great."

(On what kind of advice Tom has given him to this point)
"[To take it] one day at a time. [I'm] just watching him and Jimmy operate, and seeing how they operate faster and [I'm] trying to get up to their speed."



(On what the focus is during this time of the year)
"Just getting back to football. Getting back out here with everybody else, just doing what we do best."

(On if there is anything different for him with this being his fourth training camp)
"Everything's different. There are new faces every day; guys come in and they go. So, like I said, it's just getting back out here with the guys and just getting back to things."

(On if he feels optimistic about what the defense is capable of this year considering how they did last year)
"Yeah, I mean it is the second day. We just came back, so we'll see how it goes."

(On having a few different guys on the defense with a lot of versatility)
"Everybody out here, we're all pros, so everybody out here has got some type of talent."

(On if there is a certain comfort in having played together with Dont'a Hightower for multiple seasons now)
"I mean it is, but at the end of the day, it still comes down to you and what you are going to do."

(On what he wants to prove entering his fourth year)
"I'm just coming out here to be the best than I can be for me."

(On if it feels like it's already pretty competitive between the offense and defense even without the pads on yet)
"Yeah, like I said, everybody out here is a professional. There are no easy days out here, so everybody is out here trying to get their business done."  


(On how it feels to be back at camp and putting the pads on tomorrow)
"I feel good, man. It was a good offseason; it's been a good couple of days. We're just trying to move on and get ready as we go each day."

(On how comfortable the defense feels as the core has been together for a while now)
"Right now, it's just a big learning curve. There is always more to improve on as far as learning a certain scheme or different things and different ways that offenses are going to want to attack us. Right now, everybody is just trying to pick up where we left off and get a little bit better than last year." 

(On looking forward to the level of competition within camp)
"I'm sure everybody is ready to actually get down to the nitty gritty. We did a lot of 7 - on - 7, passing kind of stuff, that's all for the offense, so getting in pads in going to feel good for the front seven alone, but I'm sure the defensive backs will enjoy actually having something to jam now." 

(On how important it is to establish good communication in camp so that it carries over to the regular season)
"Just knowing your job is more or less the most important thing. It's hard to have a guy out there not knowing his job and trying to help him along the way, but if everybody knows their job, then when something happens, usually guys know what it is. They'll say, 'It's my fault,' and go about the next play."

(On the depth of the defensive line group)
"They look good, the young guys, the new guys, and even the guys that were here last year. They're working hard and you can definitely tell it, so I'm sure tomorrow we can see where everybody is." 

(On what impresses him the most about Rob Ninkovich)
"He' s a great player, a great leader. He orchestrates the front very well, just as far as in the meeting rooms, and he's just a great ball player." 


(On if he is ready to put the pads on tomorrow)
"Yeah, I'm excited. It's always good to start real football, and that's when the pads come on." 

(On what it's like for him as a veteran with all the new faces in the linebackers room)
"Every year it's going to be different, there is going to be change. That's just the way the game is. This is really when guys start coming together in training camp. You're working on all of the communication and just getting a feel for one another, communicating and getting everything down." 

(On how his versatility has improved over the years)
"As you're progressing through your career, you learn a position, then you learn another one, and towards the end, you know a couple. So for me, it was playing defensive end early in my career, then learning how to play linebacker. Being able to do multiple things, for me, has helped me play as long as I have. You've got to continue to do that as your career moves along."  

(On if there is different side of Jamie Collins he sees on the football field)
"Jamie [Collins] is a really great football player. He does a lot of great things, and that's one great thing about Jamie, every day you know you're going to get his best. It's nice lining up next to a guy that's going out there and every day, giving it his best to be a great football player." 

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