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New England Patriots Links 7/17/12 - Warren 'Blessed' Being in NFL 11 Years, Credits Mental Toughness

<em>Gerard Warren demonstrates how he creates separation - of the ball from Mark Sanchez</em>.
Gerard Warren demonstrates how he creates separation - of the ball from Mark Sanchez.

Cliff Olsen (The Gainesville Sun) Former Gator Warren speaks out on camp, pro career.

"Pretty fortunate [to have endured the grind of more than 10 NFL seasons], but I attribute a lot of that to just being blessed and protected, but also to what was built and instilled in me here at Union County," Warren said. "We harp on building mental and physical toughness. Where it's something that a guy might miss a game for, I might not miss a game for."

"I have had a few nice injuries. It's just the fact to having the mental (toughness) to block it out and the pain tolerance to go out there and go," Warren said. "From high ankle sprains, torn cartilage, fingers, hyper extended elbows, separated shoulders, there has been injuries but it's about the mental toughness and being able to be reliable and counted upon."

While there is no guarantee as to how long Warren's career will last, he is looking forward to training camp and a 12th year in the league.

"As many years as possible, it is a blessing to be in the NFL for 11 years," Warren said. "As long as I can go, as long as a coach and a team or an organization can see me being productive and helping their organization, then I am willing to go out and put in the work and the effort and to come out and play."

Will Brinson (CBS Sports) Winners and losers from 2012 franchise tag deadline.

Winner: The Patriot Way. Just when you think the Patriots might show some loyalty ... you're wrong again. Of course, that doesn't necessarily mean the Pats did the wrong thing by not giving Wes Welker more guaranteed money. It simply means that they did the business-like thing with Welker by not giving him more guaranteed money. New England has a long history of not handing out big contracts to older veterans, and it's served them well. If Welker has a big season in 2012 -- or perhaps a "normal" 110-catch, 1,200-yard, six-touchdown season if you prefer -- he's as good as gone.