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What They're Saying: Miami Dolphins

20191226-WhatTheyreSaying-Dolphins-PDC

Miami Dolphins coaches and players comment on their upcoming game against the New England Patriots.

On playing the Patriots at Gillette Stadium...

"I know that's going to be a great environment. It's going to be a huge challenge for us and a great test for us to go into an environment like that against a really good football team and try to compete and try to come out with a win. That's what competition's all about. I don't really get into all the other seeding and all of that. I just like to compete and our team likes to compete, so that's really what it's all about for me."

- Dolphins Head Coach Brian Flores

"Obviously it's a very good team. It's a good atmosphere. They really know and love their football up there. It's a place where you're going to have to be at your very best. You're going to have to deal with all of the elements of playing on the road. There is going to be plenty of adversity. A lot of noise. They're going to have something for us that maybe we didn't expect and force us to communicate."

- Dolphins Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick

"It's a road game in a tough environment, against a good football team. It will be a great challenge for us. As far as the history, my personal history there, that's one of those things that right now, I'm the head coach of the Miami Dolphins. That's where my focus is going to be Sunday at one o'clock. Yes, there are a lot of relationships and friendships I have there. Again, those go far beyond football. I'll be ready to compete on Sunday at one o'clock."

- Dolphins Head Coach Brian Flores

"A lot of the focus will be on us and continuing to get better and to end the season on a high note. I know there's a lot of stuff at stake for them and maybe not so much for us, but I promise we'll give everything we have and we're going up there to try to win the game."

- Dolphins Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick

On competing against Bill Belichick after being a member of the Patriots staff...

"I was with Bill for 15 years. I know him very well. He knows me very well. At the end of the day, I have a lot of respect for him. I learned a lot from him. I'm fortunate to have worked with that organization for a long time; but I know this about him: he's going to try to beat the heck out of us, and he knows this about me, that we're going to do the same. That's why I was in the building, because I'm competitive by nature. I think that's something I try to impart on the players I was around. I know they're competitive. I love those guys and they love me, and I know that. From McCourty to (Patrick) Chung to (Kyle) Van Noy to (Elandon) Roberts to (Dont'a) Hightower, I built relationships with these guys that go far beyond football. I know that; but on Sunday we're going to be competing against each other and nobody's going to care about any of that stuff. I think that's the same with Bill and that coaching staff and all the guys there – Josh (McDaniels), Joe Judge. The friendships go far beyond football, so I know that and I think Bill knows that; but once 1 o'clock on Sunday (comes), they're going to be on the other side and we're competing and we'll be friends after that, after those three or four hours. That's kind of my take."

- Dolphins Head Coach Brian Flores

On the Patriots defense...

"One thing about it a New England-led defense is they're going to make you – they're going to force you – to make plays."

- Dolphins Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick

On Stephon Gilmore...

" I think he's really grown over the last few years. This is one of the best corners in the league, one of the best defensive players in the league. I think from a coverage standpoint – big receiver, small receiver, quick receiver – he can really do it all. He can move inside if you need him. He can do a lot of different things. It's going to be definitely a challenge. It's a challenge for every team to get open against him in man coverage, and that's why a lot of teams just stay away from him, to be honest."

- Dolphins Head Coach Brian Flores

On Julian Edelman...

"He's arguably one of the toughest players in the NFL pound for pound. However you want to look at it, I don't care – he's one of the toughest players in the NFL, period, point blank. It's hard to prepare for him. He's tough. He's talented with his quickness, his speed, the ability to block in the run game. There is so much to prepare for. How many wide receivers do you talk about being a point-of-attack blocker in the run game? That's what you're dealing with. He's a point-of-attack blocker as a wide receiver, and he's their number one targeted guy. Yeah, it's a challenge. That's why I'm a little bit out of breath because I was running down here and I almost forgot about this because I was working. (laughter) We're going to do everything in the game plan to limit him; but when you watch the tape, plenty of people double him, and he still catches the ball so it doesn't matter. He's a good player. You're talking about one of the best receivers in the league over the past 10 or 11 years. I think this is his 11th year because he came in the same year as me. He's tough, he's talented and he's going to keep coming at you, period. Whatever we do, we've got to be ready to do it for 60 minutes, or 70. Who knows?"

- Dolphins Defensive Coordinator Patrick Graham

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