New England Patriots Links 9/09/09 - Defending the Defense Without Seymour

Back to the future. Players get their throwback gear this morning for Monday night's game.

Bill Belichick answers a question about the changing complexion of the roster and what concerns he may have going into the first game without missing the leadership of Bruschi, Seymour, Hobbs and Vrabel.

There's a change every year on your team. That's part of the National Football League. It's part of every football team, really, and so we always deal with that. I think we have a lot of good leaders on our team and especially on the defensive side of the ball. Those players - even though some of them are young players like Jerod Mayo, Gary Guyton, Brandon Meriweather - guys like that, as well as some of our more experienced players like [Adalius Thomas], Vince [Wilfork] and Ty [Warren], [and] players like that.

Each team has its own chemistry, its own dynamics, and I think ours is very good. It's different, but I think that our players, especially some of the players that have not only been here longer, but have a significant role on our team, have done a excellent job with their ability to lead and set a positive example for our football team, regardless of what side of the ball they've been on. No doubt about it. It's different, but I think it's good.

Nick Caserio defends the defense without Richard Seymour.

I think we have good players on this football team. I think we realize there are definitely challenges that we face that the Buffalo Bills offense provides. This is the first year kind of this no huddle, up-tempo style. They've been productive during the preseason, so I mean we certainly have our hands full preparing for them offensively. But having said that, we feel good about where the club is, where we are. I know that coach Pees can probably speak a little more as it relates to the defense, but I just think where we are as far as heading into the game against Buffalo, we're going to prepare the best we can. We're going to prepare our players the best we can and we're going to put ourselves in the position to hopefully go out there Monday night and be successful, and hopefully we end up on the right side of the ledger.

Dean Pees talks about the leadership torch being passed.

Well I think like always, when Tedy Bruschi and all those guys that you just mentioned came here at some point in time; they took over the leadership role from somebody else and that's what'll happen again. Somebody's got to step up and be the leaders and we'll find out who those are. No disrespect to anybody who retired or [is] gone from the team or anything else, but things change. Coaches change, players change. It presents new opportunities for other guys to become leaders. The torch always gets passed on good teams to somebody else and now it's their opportunity, the guys that are in the locker room right now, to step up and be those guys. And I'm actually looking forward to finding out who those guys are going to be.

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