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New England Patriots Links 7/29/11 - Wilfork: 'How Quick We Can Learn Is How Quick We Can Get Better'

Jerod Mayo speaks with the media after yesterday's practice.

"Coach Belichick will find a way to get us in shape and get us ready to go for four quarters, so that's what we'll do."

"To be honest - whatever the rules are, they are and I'm willing to do it any way - two-a-days, three-a-days, whatever."

 "[The presence of Vince Wilfork] helps a lot. A lot of people see how big he is, the double teams that he takes and things like that, but people don't really know that he's a smart guy, a smart player. He makes some of the adjustments and helps me out a lot on the field. He's a good player."

"We were pretty young last year, so having guys here learning things [was constructive], even though it was an awkward year. But, these guys came back in shape and we're ready to go."

 "[The jump from year one to year two] was very critical. At the same time, I had some veteran leaders around me that helped me, took me under their wing that first and second year. It really helped me out a lot."

"Everyone is in the same boat [regarding the shortened season]. We're all starting from scratch. It's not like we had the passing camps and things like that, so we all have a lot of learning to do." (On fan excitement for the return of football) "They're very excited. We're excited to see them out here as well, so it's a good day."

Vince Wilfork answers questions after practice.

"It's always the team first. That's the Patriot way. If you can't put the team first, then you won't be here. That's the motto that we live by. We really don't care too much about the individual [accomplishments] because we want to win. It's not an individual sport where you go out on the track and run 100 yards or a 200-yard dash and win a medal. To win in this, it takes a team effort. The quicker we understand that, the quicker we can get things rolling."

"I don't pay attention [to the personnel moves of other teams] at all because whenever we play, whoever we play, it doesn't matter who is on that [other] sideline or who is on that field. The game is always won between the lines, so I care less who I play against. I just try to prepare well and put it out there on the field. That's one of the main things that we have to [do], get this playbook down, and every day is going to be a challenge. It's going to challenge us, but I think with commitment we'll be ok."

"Like I said, all of that [what happened in the offseason] doesn't matter. We‘ve been away for a long time and whatever you've got, you've got to give it to us. That's where we're all at. All that's in the past and everything is over. It's football. Everyone wanted football. Well, it's here. How quick we can learn [is] how quick we can get better as a team. Make progress every day - that's our goal." (

"I don't know [what to expect from Bill Belichick]. Whatever he has for us, I'm pretty sure it's something we need."

"I think everyone in that locker room [welcomes new players to the team]. It's just the type of people we have. If you're here, we'll welcome you with open arms because we always want to be on the same page. No matter how you slice it, when you step on this field, you have to be on the same page. That's where mistakes happen.

So whoever steps in that locker room, we're going to make sure we cover everything we can in that team room and in meeting rooms and one-on-one time to put it on this field in practice and a game. But that's being a professional. We're very competitive. There're 32 teams out there and every one of them is competitive. I just believe that it's going to be very competitive at this camp. Like I said, it's going to be different, but you know what? The ball is rolling so we have to continue to roll it and hopefully we can get this thing started the right way."