FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Patriots defensive lineman Vince Wilfork expressed excitement at getting back on the practice field, offered praise for potential teammate Albert Haynesworth and suggested he'd be OK with shuffling his position so long as it aids New England in winning games. Here's some highlights from his 12-minute chat with the media after Thursday's morning walkthrough outside Gillette Stadium:
On getting back to work: "Just happy to be back. It’s been a long time for us, for all of us, for myself. It’s time to get to work. We have a lot in front of us right now, going into the playbook, great deal of commitment to where we want to be. That’s where we’re at now, starting with the meetings and the walkthrough and just start putting it together."
On Albert Haynesworth as a player and potential teammate: "I think he’s a great player, hell of a player. I had a chance to play in the Pro Bowl with him. I think he’s a great athlete... One thing we try not to do is see what’s going on around the league because our hands are full right now. No more two-a-days, that knocks half of your practices away. We’re in that study room, watching film, getting back, and trying to move forward. Whatever that is, that’s what we’re going to do. If it’s with certain people, it is, if it’s not, oh well, this ship is moving, moving fast, moving quick. I'm just excited to be back."
On leadership in locker room without old stalwarts: "That’s the past. What we have is what we have. We've had some great players come through here. We have some pretty good players now. I’ve been with some good players and I’ve got some great, great teammates now. But all that doesn't matter right now. What matters right now: How fast we can go in this film room, get into this playbook and come out here and put it together. That’s what our focus is."
On playing defensive end in the past: "It was different, but you never know what happens. I always classify myself as a defensive lineman, so whatever I can do to help my team, I’ll do. I’m just blessed [coach] Bill [Belichick] had the faith in me to do what I did. Whatever it takes to win, I’m all for it. I'd go to war with my teammates any time, we love to win. Right now, we're far away from that right now. We haven’t even practiced yet. With time, if we have the commitment, there’s no doubt in my mind we can get to a level that we are comfortable with."
On teaching the Patriot Way to newcomers: "That person, he’ll see how we do things around here. Point blank. We’ve had guys come through here with a rap sheet, [people saying] that, 'He can’t be handled,' or 'This guy can't do this.' You know what, it worked out fine for us. So, I don’t think it’ll be a big problem for us. Like I said, that’s the organization’s call on who they bring in and who they don’t bring in. As a teammate, when we’re on the field, we’re all working together, we want to be the best."
On Belichick's plan for afternoon session: "I don’ know. What does he have for us? I’m pretty sure it’s something we need."