We'll go ahead and start with the injury list for today. The guys that we'll list as out are Richie Braham, Dexter Jackson and Tab Perry. A.J. Nicholson will be listed as doubtful. These guys will be questionable: Antonio Chatman and Rashad Jeanty. The rest of the guys will be probable. We do have some guys sore and we'll give some guys some time off today. We'll have some guys work today, and some guys work tomorrow in lieu of the game.
Q: What did Rashad Jeanty do?ML:
Rashad has a foot sprain. It is a sprain, or a bruise.
Q: Who starts in his place if he can't go?ML:
We'll have a combination of people.
Q: Will it be Sports Illustrated cover guy Caleb Miller?ML:
I would say he'd see more time. As I said, we're getting healthier, and hopefully with Antonio Chatman being able to do some work today. He had a really good workout Tuesday, so we felt good about progressing him back into practice. He's been chomping at the bit, so we'll see how he does.
Q: The Patriots sure seem to make you focus:ML:
It's good. It's a great challenge. Those guys have been world champions three times very recently, so they pride themselves on their preparation. That's one of the things that impresses me so much is their preparation, week to week, opponent to opponent, and how they can go and change things. That's the challenge for us this week. We know we're going to be put to the test, and we've got to be up to the challenge. Our preparation has to raise a level, and that's what the exciting part of this week is.
Q: With the NFL being such a copycat league, are there certain things you've taken from Bill Belichick?ML:
I've learned a lot. I think the strength of the middle of your team is important. When we lost a little bit last year, we made sure we went back and added to that. Brian Simmons, Dexter Jackson, and Sam Adams have been added to strengthen our team down the middle where we really faltered last year. I know in speaking with their people during the offseason, they felt like they had a dropoff when they lost Ted Bruschi, Ted Johnson and Rodney Harrison.
They started the year a little bit shaky and they moved Mike Vrabel inside, and Mike stabilized things. It was the same thing this year when Ted Bruschi got hurt, so they went out and got Junior Seau. Now Rodney Harrison is back. I think their way of approaching the salary cap and team concept has been a great lesson for teams in the NFL. What they say is, 'I realize you're a fine, fine player. But this is where we're going to go. And at that point, you know we love you, but you're going to play for somebody else. We're going to un-wrap the next guy, and we're going to play'. They've overcome injuries. They've overcome shortcomings here and there, and guys expanded their roles.
Q: On Junior Seau:ML:
Junior is just an outstanding player. He is physical, tough, and a guy on Sunday who says, 'Hey, get on my back. Here we go.' Unfortunately, we've got to play against him this week.
Q: Bill Belichick's role players always seem to come through:ML:
Their whole aura and how they've done things has been great. There's always different ways of doing things and you try to learn from people that have been successful. He's been great for me to learn from.
Q: Has Corey Dillon ever called and said, 'Thanks for shipping me to the Patriots, where I won a Super Bowl ring'? ML:
He has not called. But he told me that when I saw him in the preseason after they won the Super Bowl. Corey was a great player here. He was one of the guys I leaned on so much my first year. He got an opportunity to go play for a team and help them win a World Championship. I was just listening to the game the other night, and they were talking about Corey was 15th, or 16th on the NFL all-time rushing list. That's awesome. He is the only active running back right now in the NFL with 10,000 yards. His accomplishments are huge.
Q: It seems both teams got good value on the Corey Dillon trade:ML:
It was a win-win for both teams. We kind of said it that day and everybody benefited from it. They got the veteran back that they were looking for. For us, Rudi Johnson continued to step up and expand his role, and we were able to draft Madieu Williams.