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New England Patriots Links 8/11/09 - Wilhite Looking Like A Starter

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<em>CB Jonathan Wilhite leaps for a one-handed interception at Training Camp.</em>
CB Jonathan Wilhite leaps for a one-handed interception at Training Camp.

Andy Hart notes Belichick's assessment of CB Jonathan Wilhite; prepping for the Eagles and more notes from Monday's practice.

"Jonathan, I thought, made a lot of strides last year from the beginning of the year to the end of the year and then he followed that up with a real strong offseason, offseason program, and spring camps and got off to a good start here in training camp," Belichick said. "Jonathan has really worked hard. He’s become a very dependable player for a young guy. He’s smart. He’s quiet, but he definitely understands not only what we’re doing, but concepts and offenses and how they play. He’s a versatile kid. He plays in the kicking game, can play outside, can play inside on the corner. So he’s got a good variety of skills and that’s always valuable when you can do different things with the same player. That helps him match up against different receivers, some fast receivers, some quick receivers, different guys that can run after the catch - he’s a good tackler. I think he does a lot of things well and he’s gotten better. It seems like every time he walks out on the field, it’s been very, very steady."

Shalise Manza Young reports that the Defense is moving closer to full strength.

Shawn Crable is concentrating most on his hands and getting off the ball, working on his hand placement to help him rush the passer. He knows he is behind the other young guns at his position — Jerod Mayo and Gary Guyton, who were rookies last year, and Crable’s good friend and former Michigan teammate Pierre Woods is a likely starter — and isn’t afraid to receive guidance from his peers.

"They’ve played; they’ve done a lot of things, so I have to make my mark and play and try to add to what they’ve already done," he said. "I feel like they’ve got a lot of game experience — it’s like they’re vets and I’m a rookie, so I get to take a lot of criticism from them, get to ask a lot of questions of them, because they’ve played."