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Belichick comments on new linemen

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Patriots coach Bill Belichick held a news conference Monday afternoon and the main topic of discussion was the team’s new look along the defensive line.

When looking at the Patriots through a more traditional 4-3 type defensive lens, there are currently 21 defensive linemen on the roster.

Belichick said it’s as big a group as he’s had, which is tied to the increase to a 90-player limit.

Much of Belichick’s news conference was centered around the new additions over the last four days – Shaun Ellis, Andre Carter, Gerard Warren and Mark Anderson.

A few soundbites:

On Ellis: “Certainly Shaun has played a lot of good football against us. Been a very productive player. Durable. Very consistent. It seems like every time we play him, he lines up there and we have a hard time with him. I’m glad we had an opportunity to add him to our team. I think he brings a really good presence in terms of his leadership and professionalism, as well as experience, and his style of play and performance.”

On Carter: “I’d say a lot of the same charactertisics [as Ellis]. Andre is a player I spent a lot of time with prior to him coming out in the [2001] draft. Of course, he was five years in San Francisco and five years in Washington. I think he’s another high-quality individual, very professional, works hard, very well-conditioned athlete. He’s had a lot of production throughout his career. Last year when Washington went to the 3-4 defense, it kind of wasn’t a good fit for him in that system. But we feel like what we’ll ask him to do this year, relative to what he was asked to do last year, and what we’ve seen him do the first nine years of his career, that we could use his ability on the edge.”

On Anderson: "I see Mark as an edge player, as a player on the perimeter of the defense, absolutely. But how much, or when that is, I don't know."