Vince Wilfork: Patriots have responded well

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – When it comes to the pulse of the New England Patriots' locker room, and how players have responded following last week’s surprising trade of Logan Mankins, veteran defensive lineman Vince Wilfork likes what he’s seen so far.

The re-elected captain for a seventh straight season spoke to reporters for an extended stretch during Wednesday’s media-access period.

“I think the team responded well,” Wilfork said in his first locker-room remarks since Mankins was traded (Wilfork was a guest on sports radio WEEI Tuesday).

Wilfork echoed what coach Bill Belichick often says -- the importance of moving forward.

“Our focus is strictly toward Miami right now,” he said. “Anything we have personal or we feel leaning towards anything that is going on, if it’s not Miami, your mindset is in the wrong spot. So I think everybody is focused and ready to go play football. Our hands are full. We can’t be focused on anything that happened in the past right now. If we let that take us off track, we’ll be in big trouble.”

When asked if it was a challenging process to get to that point, given Mankins’ standing with the team, Wilfork didn’t want to go there.

“That’s the past,” he responded. “We all understand, the most important thing for this football team is Miami this week. Everything we have, we have to put in that bucket and deal with Miami. That’s where we’re at.”

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