Q)How much did watching tapes of Tedy Bruschi help you get comfortable in Eric Mangini's defense?
Vilma: I did that because when [Eric] Mangini became the head coach and Donnie Henderson, my old defensive coordinator, went to Detroit, I figured we would be running the 3-4 defense. They promoted Bob Sutton to defensive coordinator and I got the playbook from him. I started asking for DVDs to actually watch because there is only so much that the coach can tell you and the coach can coach you. I actually have to see it for yourself.
Q)What are your impressions of Tedy Bruschi and how he performs in that defense?
Vilma: He is a student of the game. You can tell he is a veteran of the game. He knows how to pick the run plays. He knows how to adjust to the things you can't coach. He knows how to adjust really well to the ball.
Q)Tom Brady has been very tough on you guys. What do you have to do to keep Brady in line?
JV: We have to contain him. You are not going to shut down Brady. I doubt that is possible. We have to contain him. We don't want him going off for 300 yards passing and three touchdowns and no picks or anything like that. We have to do a good job containing him and limiting the plays he can make.
Q)How big has the loss of John Abraham turned out to be?
Vilma: It is disappointing to lose John Abraham. He was a great defensive end. He created a lot of havoc for us off the edge. We compensate by bringing a lot of our blitzes and bringing pressure from other areas because one guy is not going to make up for 11 sacks a year. We have to bring it from different ways and disguise and confuse the offense.
Q)The Patriots are using rotating running backs with Corey Dillon and Laurence Maroney. What kind of challenge does that provide a defense?
Vilma: The good thing about it is that the run similar plays for both players. The bad thing is you have fresh legs coming in and they both run hard. They both run very hard. It could be the third quarter when we have been grinding out a 12-play drive and then they want to put in a fresh back. That just makes it tougher for us as a defense.