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Vince Wilfork Transcript: 'We don't have room for bandwagoners'

New England Patriots DL Vince Wilfork addresses the media during his postgame press conference at Gillette Stadium on Sunday, November 23, 2014.


Q:** Do you think overall this was your best defensive game as a unit?

VW: I don't know. I don't follow each week how well we are, but this was a good win for us – for this whole team, not just how we played defensively but basically how we played together for 60 minutes in all three phases. That was a big emphasis going into this game knowing how Detroit is a good football team, tough physically and mentally. They've been in dog fights, so they know how to win ballgames playing form ahead and playing from behind. They know what it takes, so we knew we needed our best for 60 minutes in all three phases and I think today we got it. We executed well. It seems like every week I come in here and talk about execution, but that's the number one goal when you put in a game plan: to be able to execute it and if you need to make adjustments on the sideline, you make them, which we did. There were some things that we looked at differently that they started to do. We didn't too much cover it, so we made the adjustments on the sideline and we executed it. To walk away giving up nine points to a team like this, it's a great feeling. The better feeling is to get a 'W', especially at home. We worked out tails off and we're going to continue to work out tails off from here on out because that's what we're going to need.

Q: What did you see at the end of the game there with the center and the penalty?


VW:** I didn't see anything. I just heard what happened, but that was stupid. I didn't see it, but from what I heard…You're taking a knee. They'd get mad if we were just to blow up one of their players, so I mean, it's just uncalled for. But at the same time, you always have to protect yourself, so you always have to play with your neck on a swivel and being alert for 60 minutes and it came down to it today on a bonehead play like that, but luckily no one got hurt and we can move on.

Q: It seemed like your unit was on the field a lot.

VW: To me it's just one of those things where no matter how long we're on the field or what we're on the field for, we have to understand who we're facing. Anything else didn't matter. When the defense takes the field, our job is to stop people. When the offense takes the field, their job is to make plays and score points. As long as that whistle or that horn hasn't blown in the game, that's what we're going to do. That's what we're here for. That's why we get paid. There's going to be good times, there's going to be tough times, there's going to be times when we have to rally from somewhere or find a play to get us going. It's not just going to happen overnight and it's not going to happen perfectly every time. When those times come, you have to be able to adjust we'll and be able to just block out everything and concentrate on just play at a time and making plays. When we do that we're good. We knew how tough this game was going to be. Nothing surprised me. Offense, defense, special teams, the areas that we wanted to attack, we attacked. The areas we thought they were good at they showed they had some good players at those areas. There wasn't nothing surprising. Once again, it just came down to execution and us being able to execute well and we did.


The New England Patriots take on the Detroit Lions at Gillette Stadium on Sunday, November 23, 2014.

Q:** Were you surprised to see LeGarrette Blount come back and make in impact after less than a week?

VW: Yeah, it was good to see him back. He knows how we do things around here. He's never been a problem for us and I don't see him being a problem for us, but it's going to be up to him to do what he knows he can do. He knows he's got a full supporting cast of his teammates and his coaching staff behind and we feel the same way toward him and he feels the same way towards us. I'm just happy to see him back and it was a good welcome back for him today against a team like Detroit.

Q: The six-game stretch that started with Chicago and continues for a few more games was supposed to be a make or break stretch for you guys. It was supposed to be the best competition. What have you learned about your team now that you're 4-0 in those first four games?

VW: Just the character we show. So many people saying how bad we were. Everything possibly negative people could say, they were saying about us. Our number one job was to block out all the noise, ignore it, and just concentrate on what we need to do to get better and that was our number one goal and that's still out number one goal. Now you look back 11 weeks later and we're one of the best teams in the league, so the same people that were saying we were the most terrible team in the league now are patting us on the back. We don't have room for them. We don't have room for bandwagoners, guys that just off the bandwagon when things get tough. This team that we have now is a tough football team, mentally, physically. Bill [Belichick] asks a lot of us and we give a lot. We knew what it was going to take to turn it around and we did it. It was just putting one foot in front of the other each week and not worrying about what people say about how bad we are, how good we are. It was never about that. It was about us coming in here as a team and getting better as a team. Each individual improving each week, each day, your level of competition needs to step up and that's what it came down to and it's still like that. We don't want to relax one second; one moment we don't want to relax. We want to continue to get better individually and as a team. I think the more we do that, the better this team will become and that's what we're looking forward to. So each week is a different week. We know when we put on these Patriots jerseys for one reason and one reason only: to win ballgames for one another. And that's what it's all about, this Patriot uniform: wining ball games for one another and just blocking everything else out, positives and negatives.

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