Against elite DTs, Satele calls Wilfork best

Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Graham
DAVIE, Fla. -- Perhaps nobody's job in the NFL got tougher from last year to this year than that of an AFC East center.

"They added a lot of beef in the AFC East," Miami Dolphins center Samson Satele said.

The Dolphins, New England Patriots and New York Jets run 3-4 defenses, for which run-stopping nose tackles are crucial.

The Jets traded for two-time All-Pro Kris Jenkins. The Dolphins traded for veteran Jason Ferguson. The Patriots already had Pro Bowler Vince Wilfork.

The Buffalo Bills, who use a 4-3 setup, also made a deal for three-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle Marcus Stroud.

It's enough to make any center's head spin, but none more than Satele. The sophomore from Hawaii is the least-experienced center in the division.

Satele has seen everybody once. When asked who is the best, he picks the man he's about to meet Sunday for the second time this year.

Wilfork "is a real good run stopper, real quick in the middle," Satele said. "It's very deceiving what he does. He looks like he's just squatting, but he could be at the tackle spot in half a second. He's so quick, and he's so powerful, and he's hard to control.

"Me and the right guard are trying to push the dude, and sometimes we get no push because he's so stout. Next time we'll try the same thing, and he'll slip through with his quickness."

On a conference call with Dolphins reporters this week, Wilfork expressed his admiration for Satele.

"They're running that offense to the T, and I think it all starts around the center," Wilfork said. "My hat's off to him and the whole offensive line. It starts with [Satele] up front because he's the one that makes the line call. He's like a quarterback on the offense, and he does a real good job of that.

"It's very challenging for me and my defensive line when we play these guys. I'm looking for a tough battle like we always have. We have fun out there and everything. We talk, but he's one hell of a player himself."