The Patriots are still smarting from their loss to the Jets, but they don't have time to dwell on it. Coming to Foxborough this Sunday is another AFC East foe, the Buffalo Bills.
Although their 0-2 record may not show it, the Bills still have the ability to threaten the Patriots, many New England players insist.
"We're obviously upset about last week's loss, but this is another big game for us," said LB Tully Banta-Cain. "It's a division rival and they're coming off two losses. Our focus is high. We definitely have to make sure we're doing our job first and not focused on what they're doing.
"It's the NFL, you know," he added with a chuckle. "Every team is good, every team has good players. You can't really look at their record, you can't look at plays they did or didn't make, because every Sunday's different and anybody can win. We just have to play our game and make sure we're doing our job. Obviously, we're looking at what they're capable of doing and we have to eliminate that."
"This is the National Football League. It's early," NT Vince Wilforknoted. "Teams normally play their best when they play us, too. We know exactly what we need to do. This week is about how well we play. We need to get back to Patriots football."
The biggest challenge, perhaps, for the Patriots defense will be at the Bills quarterback position. Buffalo head coach Chan Gaileymade a switch this week from former starter Trent Edwardsto on-again-off-again starter Ryan Fitzpatrick.
There's much less tape of the latter to study because of his limited number of appearances in the league, although he's been with a few different teams.
"You just have to do your job, however the play is called. We just have to be sound in everything we're doing," Banta-Cain observed. "We've looked at some film of him and what he's done in the past. He's a good quarterback. We have to be prepared for whatever they throw at us."
For Bill Belichick's players, watching film, particularly after a loss, can be one of the most daunting aspects of the week of preparation for a game.
"It's not very fun, you know," WR Wes Welkeradmitted, "but it's also a big learning experience. Kind of an eye-opener, too. You just have to take it all in and move on to this week. That's what we're trying to do."
Welker added that the mood rarely lightens as the week goes on.
"Not really. [Belichick] stays on top of us pretty good. We just kind of roll with it and make sure we're staying on top of everything we need to do.
"They're obviously a good team," Welker concluded about Buffalo. "He's not blowing smoke."
Wilfork was asked today about the season-ending injury to RB Kevin Faulk, one of Wilfork's best friends on the team.
"Kevin's a great guy, great athlete," he answered. "It's tough to lose a guy like that. At the same time, I'm sure he would want us to keep it going. He's in high spirits … he's still part of this team."
Thu 9/23 Practice Notebook
For news and notes from Thursday's practice, please visit the PFW Blog.