Q: Just curious, how accurate would it be to say when the schedule came out, that this was a game you put an asterisk next to and said 'Hey, I'm looking forward to this one?'
RS: Well, I feel that way about all of them. This one is no different.
Q: Anyone in particular that you're looking forward to seeing on this Patriots team and in the organization?
RS: It's a big game for us. We have to bring our 'A' game in order to beat them. This is a team that we respect and [they] have a lot of good players, so we'll put our best foot forward.
Q: Since you left New England, how you have you changed both on and off the field?
RS: I think in life you grow [and] you learn from different situations. I've experienced a lot over the course of my career; I've learned a lot from a lot of different players and I've tried to incorporate that into my game. Out here, I'm the veteran guy around a bunch of young guys, so they keep me young and rejuvenated as well. It's been a good mixture for me. Like I said, I feel great. It's up to us now - we're just trying to get another win under our belts.
Q: What are you looking forward to in potential battles with Logan Mankins and Matt Light?
RS: They're good players. I have a lot of respect for them. I feel like we have a good defensive front and it'll be a good battle. I think that's what football is all about: a good offensive line going against a good defensive line. They have good players and we have good players and the team that plays the best on Sunday is going to win. It's pretty simple in my mind.
Q: How well do you know the games of Logan Mankins and Matt Light considering you went up against them in practice?
RS: I don't think it's going to have any bearing on this game. They're a game plan team [and] they do a lot of different things. What we saw the week before really has no bearing to anything. They attack you where you're weak, so each week is different for them. Just watching them on film, they're playing at a high level. Like I said, we have a lot of respect for them and it's going to be a great matchup.
Q: How did the 'X' routine get started?
RS: I say it's 'X' rated. When I pull out the 'X,' put all the kids to sleep. Little kids can't watch that. That's all it is.
Q: How much reflecting, if any, have you done in the last few days in terms of the way your time here in New England ended?
RS: Not a whole lot. Like I said, that was three years ago. All my attention is focused on getting my team out here a lot better. Like I said, that chapter is closed and over and done with. You kind of reflect when your career is over. I definitely understand I'm on the back nine right now, but I'm looking to finish strong.
Q: How many more holes left in your course?
RS: That's a good question. As long as I'm still playing at a high level and your body feels good and you have a desire to be the best, you still go out and do it. Like I said, I still have that competitive edge and I learned from a lot of great guys. You never take anything for granted. Like I said, I still have the desire to play hard and help the team get where it needs to go.
Q: It's been said a couple of times that you were the Raiders' number one pick. I know the trade was a shock to the system, but how long did it take for you to realize you had to be that leader? And whatever you had over here you had to bring over there to change the culture?
RS: For me, since I got here, my coaches and teammates, they've embraced me with open arms. I think you always want to be where you're welcome and you're wanted. That's really what it's been all about for me - is taking on the responsibility that's been needed. Different points in your career, you learn and you be quiet and you do what the veterans do and you always try to lead by example. Sometimes you need to be more vocal. Whatever is needed, I think that's the responsibility that the leaders have to take on on the team. It's not just me by myself. I have a good supporting cast and everyone is understanding what we're trying to do here. Two games doesn't win us anything in this league. We've got a big challenge this week and we're looking forward to it.
Q: I saw you at the funeral for Myra Kraft. Why was it important for you to be here on short notice for that?
RS: For me, Myra was a great lady, she was great to - the Kraft family was great to me and my family. I have a lot of respect for her and I just wanted to pay my respects. It isn't anything about football - it's about life. You know how valuable and precious life is. I know how much Mr. Kraft cared for his wife and loved her and he was always an example for me and my wife to follow in terms of how he treated her and how she treated him. For me, it's about the type of person you are at the end of the day, so I just wanted to go and pay my respects.
Q: You kind of touched on this a little bit, but when you were here in New England as a young guy, you had guys like Anthony Pleasant and Ted Washington and some older guys on the defensive line. How did that prepare you for this stage as a veteran guy?
RS: You're right. There were veteran guys. They taught me how to practice and what to look for on film and how to take care of your body - the little things you can do to be a pro. That's something that I valued over the course of my career and I think it's given me some staying power. Just all the little things when you add it up together in terms of nutrition, massage, you name it, they did it. I'm just trying to pass that on to my teammates here now.
Q: Is it strange for you to see the Patriots defense playing four-man fronts after being a 3-4 team for a decade?
RS: No, not really. I think we changed in and out even during my time there. It's whatever they think is going to give them the best chance to win, that's what they're going to do. You never know, they might come out to a 3-4. We have to be prepared for anything - expect the unexpected in this league. You never know - we could come out in a 3-4. Every situation is different and I've been where we've played four-man lines some games, three-man lines - whatever gave us the best opportunity to win, that's what we did. Obviously they have the big bodies inside to get it done, so that's what they went to.
Q: Brian Waters and Hue Jackson both said today that if you spent your entire career in Oakland's 4-3 system, you'd go down as one of the best defensive tackles of all time. How do you feel about those comments and what about Oakland's system has allowed you to succeed in that fashion?
RS: It's an attack style defense, first and foremost. I would say I'm humbled and honored. I have a lot of respect for those guys in terms of what Waters did over the course of his career in Kansas City and the type of player that he is and the professional and the pro that he is on and off the field. For me, I didn't categorize myself as just a 4-3 guy or a 3-4 guy. I wanted to be an every-down player, play in any system, whether it's 3-4, I wanted to be the prototype. When they speak of 3-4 defensive ends, I want my name to come up. When they speak of 4-3 defensive tackles, I'm trying to make my mark there as well. I think wherever I'm at, I just want to be the best at doing what I do. That's just competing. That's just a competitive edge. I just think that whatever you do, you want to win it. You can't control how good someone else is, but you can control how good you want to be and your attitude and how you approach the game. I've been very fortunate and blessed in that regard.
Q: It wasn't a player-for-player trade, but the Patriots ended up with offensive tackle Nate Solder for the pick that you were traded for. Are you interested in his play thus far, and is he a guy you'll watch just because of how you'll be linked to him?
RS: For me, it was a business decision. They could have gone in any route that they wanted to in terms of the draft. I don't really get caught up in who they got and what pick was it. I can't control any of that. The only thing I can control is how well I go out and play and continue to do that. That's really it from my standpoint. I don't really look at it any other way.
Q: Are you hoping to catch up with Bill Belichick at all, before or after the game on Sunday?
RS: All my teammates out there. I don't have a problem with any of them.