Vilma: Sunday will be business as usual

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The playoff atmosphere won't overtake or intimidate the Jets' co-captain

The Patriots, who have won three Super Bowls over the last five seasons, are undefeated at home in the playoffs under head coach Bill Belichick. These facts may pose as an intimidating factor to some younger players, especially rookies. Jets center Nick Mangold, who played in a number of spotlight Bowl games at Ohio State, isn't concerned with the numbers the Patriots have put up in the past.

"Looking into the past and going into the history books isn't really going to help us coming up in this game," Mangold said. "We have to focus in on what they're doing now, study hard, get out there and get after them."

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Read below for the complete transcript from inside the Jets' locker room


New York Jets' G Pete Kendall, 1.5

On Coach Mangini's "Player of the Game"…

Around here, that's considered as important as what you did on Sunday.

On Coach Mangini putting more stress on practice than other coaches…

Practice is different with Eric [Mangini], maybe as much because of the youth on this team. I've been part of some older teams as a younger guy and practice had a different feel than it does now.

On Coach Mangini's attitude in practice…

There is a lot of teaching, but it's also very competitive.

On what he has taught to Nick Mangold and D'Brickashaw Ferguson…

You'd have to ask them what they've been able to take from me that's been useful or hasn't been. Those guys came in pretty much ready to play.

On how much better Mangold and Ferguson are now than when first they came here…

The thing that they have now that they didn't have when this thing kicked off four months ago, is experience. They've seen quite a bit now, not everything they're going to see in their career, but they've got a good background now.

New York Jets' WR Laveranues Coles, 1.5

On what makes him so good at yards-after-catch…

I can't take all the credit. It has to do with the quarterback and the offensive coordinator designing plays that get us some space and I think that's what has really helped us get yards after the catch. You always want to make a play after you catch the ball, that's the fun part, that's the part that makes the game exciting, it's when you get the "ohhhs" and "ahhhs" from the crowd. Being able to make moves after you catch the football is one of the most enjoyable parts of it.

On preparing for a team that they have already beaten…

It doesn't help at all. We're playing against New England and any time you play a team like New England three times in the same year, it doesn't make it any easier.

On the five catches he had in the last meeting…

With the understanding that I have of their system and their coaches, each time you're going to get something different. The first time we played them, they played us four-down, the second time they played us three-down. I think every time you play New England, you can expect something different. They decide what they want to do and who they want to take away. If coach Belichick decides he wants to take a certain player away in a game, he does that. He really sets his mind to it and he does it. In that mind set, we don't know who he's going to take away or what mindset he's going to come into the game with. Right now, we're just going into the game prepared to make adjustments.

On how his mindset has changed as he's aged a little bit…

You try not to let the situation or the opportunity outweigh what it really is. You have to look at it and say, 'I am still playing a game,' and it is a game. I think if you allow yourself to get caught up in the moment, then it will take away from what you're doing or what you're trying to achieve and that is to play your best football. You don't want to overcomplicate things, you want to just continue to do what you do best and then hopefully focus on the job at hand. You can't do more than you can't do, you have to allow everybody else to do their jobs. If I take that same approach and allow everyone else to do what they're supposed to do and I do what I'm supposed to do, we'll be alright.

On blocking out all the hype…

It's very difficult. The media attention that you get goes along with the playoffs. I'm at home and all I can see running across the television is playoff weekend. It's something that's very exciting, I think it's great, but this a time of year when guys that have performed during the year and guys that haven't done much get an opportunity to make a name for themselves.

On the young guys realizing how precious this moment is…

It's good if they don't, because you don't want them to get overwhelmed with what's going on. You want them to take it as a week-to-week game and understand that this is just another game. If they get caught up in the moment, it takes away something from their game.

On where this team's confidence comes from…

We've been like this all year, nothing has changed. It's not just the Patriots, it's anyone. We go out and perform, that's all you can do. You can't control what anybody says or what anybody thinks. All you can do is handle what you can handle and that's control what's in between those football lines. That's the most important thing and I think guys understand that all we can do is line up on Sunday when those 60 minutes are up on the clock and try to control your own destiny.

New York Jets' C Nick Mangold, 1.5

On not feeling like a rookie anymore…

I'll be a rookie for another two years I think. It's always new and it's always exciting. It's one of those things that has been a fun experience going through it all, being a rookie.

On how far he has come…

I'll look back when everything is said and done and take a look at some films and check out how things went.

On where he expected the Jets to be at this point…

I had no idea. I came in expecting that I was going to have to learn a whole heck of a lot, and that has come true. After that, were things that I can't even worry about, because the first step is learning.

On where the team's confidence comes from…

It comes from the players that are in this locker room. Guys have a lot of heart and a lot of drive to be out there every day at practice, to be out on the field working hard and making sure everyone is working hard.

On not fearing New England…

It's one of those things where you go out there and play the game. They have great players across the ball who have done some great things and who are doing great things right now; that's our biggest challenge right now. Looking into the past and going into the history books isn't really going to help us coming up in this game. We have to focus in on what they're doing now, study hard, get out there and get after them.

On having D'Brickashaw around who is going through the same rookie experience…

It's been nice having a guy with the same problems and the same feelings. I can ask him the stupid questions that I would feel like an idiot asking the veterans. It's been a huge help having him.

On how he will react to his first playoff experience…

I have no idea; I didn't know how I was going to react to the home opener, to the first preseason game or to the 16th game, so it's one of those things that happens and you go with it. It's exciting, but I'm not sure what the reaction is going to be.

New York Jets' LB Jonathan Vilma, 1.5

On the pulse of this squad…

The pulse of this squad is the same, business as usual. We're obviously excited to in the playoffs, but we're not letting that overtake or intimidate us. We'll be ready to play Sunday and it will be business as usual.

On preparing for a team that they have beaten already…

To be honest with you, the fact that we split them 1-1 in the regular season was good for us, but aside from that we know they're going to do some things differently, so we're going to have to be ready for that.

On if the team realizes how precious this opportunity is…

Of course, the way we've been practicing, we've had good practices this week. We're going to follow it up with a good practice today and be ready and be sharp for Sunday.

On both New York teams being in the playoffs…

It's great for the fans in the city, I know they'll be excited as well as we will be.

On New England's running backs…

Both running backs are obviously, very good running backs, so we have to prepare. I like to say, "When either one is in on offense, what do they do differently on offense?" But they don't do much differently on offense, so we're preparing for the same plays, we just have to understand that the different running backs, Corey Dillon or Laurence Maroney, are going to play to their strengths.

On what they did last time against New England to contain the run…

The biggest thing was understanding our gap-fits, gap-assignments and tackling. That's the biggest thing and I think we did a good job of that last year.

New York Jets' LB Matt Chatham, 1.5

On their confidence level after getting to Tom Brady a lot in the last meeting…

We know we can get there. With that being said, you have to duplicate it and it's that time of year when you have those mistakes on paper and they're correctable, so I'm sure that's what they're trying to do.

On how difficult it will be to repeat the performance from the last meeting…

That's the difficulty, but I think one of Eric Mangini's strengths is his game plan too. In a one-game scenario, these are the kinds of coaches that thinkthat's their strength. Not that they're not strong over the course of 16 games, but this is what they live for, this is what they thrive on.

On the "chess match" between Mangini and Belichick…

This is an exciting game. All the relationship stuff aside, we've got two division rivals, two city rivals, an extreme situation and two guys that like to butt heads on the field.

On teams going into New England games with a different mindset…

I don't know that, I can only vouch for us and we have an extreme amount of respect for them, especially since a lot of us in this room know a lot of guys in their room. We know how they're preparing right now, we know what they're doing. We know that they ratchet it up this time of year and it puts the onus on us to do it as well.

Friday Injury Report Jets Questionable: FB B.J. Askew (foot), RB Kevan Barlow (thigh), CB David Barrett (hip), WR Laveranues Coles (jaw), CB Andre Dyson (knee), FB James Hodgins (knee), C Nick Mangold (knee), OL Brandon Moore (ankle), S Kerry Rhodes (knee) & DL Dewayne Robertson (knee)
Probable: *LB Matt Chatham (foot), *RB Cedric Houston (calf), *QB Chad Pennington (calf), *DB Eric Smith (foot) & *DE Bryan Thomas (shoulder)

Patriots Out: S Rodney Harrison (knee)
Questionable: WR Bam Childress (ankle), RB Kevin Faulk (knee), CB/S Chad Scott (back), TE Benjamin Watson (knee) & NT Vince Wilfork (ankle)
Probable: *QB Tom Brady (r shoulder), *CB Ellis Hobbs (wrist), *DL Richard Seymour (elbow) & LB Mike Vrabel (back)

*Denotes players who participated in practice

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