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Monday, August 3, 2009
AFC East quote marks


Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Graham

A collection of AFC East quotes from Sunday's training camps (the Buffalo Bills had the day off):

Miami Dolphins coach Tony Sparano on Chad Pennington getting stronger over the offseason:

"When you play as many years as he's played, to get something out of the offseason both physically and fundamentally is important. Sometimes players get on in that age and that many years in the league and you can't tell them anything. This guy is not built that way. He wants all of the information that he can get.

"What I have noticed out of him is arm strength. I noticed him making some throws a little bit easier that may be were a little more uncomfortable last year because of the physical strength and what [quarterbacks coach David] Lee had done with him from a fundamental standpoint."

New York Jets coach Rex Ryan on the options receiver Brad Smith, a former college quarterback, offers:

"When you've got an unusual guy like Brad Smith, you're able to do those things, whether it's Wildcat or whatever they call it. We'll have our own form of that. I always think it's tougher when you have a guy who can throw it. I think that's why Miami took that guy from West Virginia in the second round, Pat White. You've got that kind of ability, like Michael Vick. We have that in Brad."

Ryan on having Lito Sheppard start opposite Darrelle Revis at cornerback:

"It's pretty good when your second corner is a Pro Bowl player. That's not all bad. We'll take our chances. I know we're not very good there, but we'll be OK I guess."

Dolphins rookie cornerback Vontae Davis on the 3,152 fans who showed for the start of camp:

"I mean, it's crazy. Before we actually practiced, I told one of the veterans, that this feels like a spring game to me in college. That is how the spring game is. But it's practice; the first practice."

Dolphins defensive end Jason Taylor:

"There is no place like home. It was great to come out today and be back on the field with pads on playing the game that I love, in a place that I love. It was great when I came out. I got a big reception, and that was obviously very heartfelt and emotional for me."

Patriots coach Bill Belichick on the elimination of the three-man wedge from kick returns:

"I don't think it will affect us too much. That really hasn't been a major thing for us. I'm not saying we never did it, but that wasn't the focus of our kickoff return blocking scheme. But it certainly is with some other teams and I think it will affect them more than it does us.

"We'll see how exactly that is officiated and how it gets called. Being a yard away when everybody's running full speed and then there's going to be a big collision between coverage guys and blockers. Where that yard is and if it does or doesn't exist at the right time, we'll see how all that gets officiated. I don't really have the answer to that question."

Sparano on second-year guard Shawn Murphy, who was inactive for every game last year:

"In my mind, 'Murph' gets to go in there and it his job to lose, you know, when you put him in there and you let him go."