New England Patriots Links 7/26/12 - Expectations High For Season, Defense

CB Kyle Arrington ready to battle for position.

Jeff Howe reports expectations are as high as ever for the Patriots at the start of camp.

The Patriots have gotten sick of waiting. Today, they finally get their chance to unleash some frustration from February’s Super Bowl XLVI loss when they return to the field for the first practice of training camp.

Expectations are as high as ever, perhaps rivaling the same level of preseason anticipation from 2008, after the Patriots dropped Super Bowl XLII, but loaded up in the offseason. There’s been plenty of hype from the outside again this year, but the players know how good they can be, too.

"I’m very hungry," defensive tackle Kyle Love said. "I’m on ‘E’ (empty). I’m ready to get full, just like a gas tank. I’ve been dreaming about this day since the Super Bowl. After that day, I was ready to go back at it."

"I’m definitely excited," Love said. "It’s going to be a real good year this year."

"At this point, you just want to go into it as healthy as possible," cornerback Kyle Arrington said. "Try to get off your feet, relax, clear your mind because it’s a long season, but it’s going to be a good one."

Karen Guregian notes Vince Wilfork trusts Bill Belichick brought in the right people to get the defense over that final hurdle.

"We haven’t had great defenses over the past few years. We’ve had OK defenses. But I know this guy won championships with some great defenses all the way back to New York. I have faith in him no matter what he pulls out," Wilfork said of Belichick.

"Whatever is the best fit for this defense . . . we can’t compare to any other of his defenses. We just have to trust what he’s doing for this one.

"Last year with the lockout, everything was moving fast. We were throwing stuff in with all the new guys. This year, we have a good opportunity to do something that we started in OTAs and minicamps. To lay the foundation and move forward.

"I was always taught defenses win championships. I’m sticking by that. It’s too early to predict about this defense, but we’ll see where it goes."

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