FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- The theme at the New England Patriots' organized team activity on Thursday was clear: It's time to put the Super Bowl XLVI loss to the New York Giants in the past and start thinking about the upcoming NFL season.
"At this point, we try to move on and you try to look forward to what this season is going to be about," said quarterback Tom Brady, one of a handful of players who addressed reporters after practice. "It's a different group of players, different coaches, a little different system. You're trying to put together a team here that can go out and compete every single week. You don't look back too much on the past and say, 'What if? What if?' You'd drive yourself crazy. At some point you have to put it in the past and move on."
Brady, who admitted to losing sleep replaying portions of the team's 21-17 loss to the Giants in February, said that as he gets older he begins to appreciate his opportunities to play football even more. Part of that comes from missing almost the entire 2008 season with a knee injury.
Patriots receiver Deion Branch said he has watched the Super Bowl loss but put it behind him shortly after the game.
"Last year's over. Last year is done. I put it behind me probably about a week after the Super Bowl," Branch said. "That stuff is over, I'm looking forward to this year. Can't wait."
Defensive captain Vince Wilfork echoed that mantra, saying the loss to the Giants in Indianapolis in February has "no effect" on him today.
"You start back to where you started at, from zero," Wilfork said Thursday. "That's where I'm at right now. You can't dwell over spoiled milk. Last year was last year. That's how you have to look at it. You have to be a professional. When it comes down to it, you have to be a professional about everything, and that plays a big part now. We have to be able to move forward, I've moved forward."
Part of the process in moving forward for Wilfork is the addition of new teammates and a new position coach for the first time in his career. As Patrick Graham takes the reins as defensive line coach (with Pepper Johnson moving back to tutor the linebackers), Wilfork doesn't believe the switch will have a major impact.
"It really won't affect us in a different way," he said. "I think we all talk the same way and that's one good thing that you can always count on, being talked the same way. Everybody knows each other's job. That goes for coaches also. So that move really isn't big for us."
Information from ESPNBoston.com's Mike Rodak and Field Yates and The Associated Press was used in this report.