Quick hits from the locker room

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Quick hits from the media-access period in the locker room (2:15-3 p.m.):

1. Players had their travel bags packed as the team was scheduled to board buses en route to the airport in the 3 o'clock hour. Those drawing larger media crowds included DE Andre Carter, DL Vince Wilfork, LB Jerod Mayo and WR Wes Welker.

2. The Patriots have an open roster spot and signs in the locker room pointed to safety Ross Ventrone being a top candidate for a promotion from the practice squad. Nothing is official at this point, and things can always change, but with the club leaving today it's likely that a decision has already been made.

3. Vince Wilfork was asked this Tim Tebow-based question, "When you hit the quarterback, you have to hit him hard because he's a strong kid, right?" Wilfork's response: "I don't look at him as a quarterback. He's a quarterback/running back/fullback/tight end. He's a slasher. He's a tough guy to play against. Just by looking at him on film, you see some guys go in and try to him up high and he bounces off some tackles. We have to definitely wrap up. Not just the quarterback, but these backs. They can find a crease and get downhill real quick."

4. Nippon TV, from Japan, was represented in the locker room with two reporters. Vince Wilfork seemed to enjoy his interview with them.

5. Quarterback Tom Brady had two large boxes of UGGs in front of his locker. Brady is a spokesman for UGGs and the boxes were filled with gifts for his teammates.

6. Wes Welker on leaving for Denver on Friday: "It's nice to get there early, get used to the elements, get acclimated to everything and get ready for the game on Sunday. I don't know if it's a huge deal, but it's still a long flight. I think [it's good] getting there early and making sure we put ourselves in position, and if there is any acclimating to do, we do it."

7. Vince Wilfork on the Broncos' rising up in the fourth quarter: "You can play 55 minutes of good football, but if you don't have it together for those [final] five minutes of the ballgame, those 55 minutes really don't mean anything. The more critical it gets, the better they get."

8. Similar to last week, players were reminded to pack seven-stud screws for their footwear. Sports Authority Field at Mile High is a natural grass surface.