Leftovers from DE Rob Ninkovich

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. –- Some leftovers from Tuesday’s media Q&A with New England Patriots defensive end Rob Ninkovich:

Offseason moves creating a spark: “We’ve done some good things so far and it’s not over yet, right? I’m excited that Julian [Edelman] came back. He’s my guy. ... With Tom [Brady], you can pretty much do anything. So offensively, we’re looking good. Defensively, just adding a couple pieces, those guys are tremendous talents. Again, as a defensive end, you’re happy to have two great corners that can shut down two receivers at the same time. That’s awesome. And we have great safeties. Defensively, we’ve improved, but we have to put in the work. That starts now.

Brandon Browner’s size stands out: “The guy is bigger than me. When I first met him, I didn’t know he was a corner. He’s a big, physical guy. He’s tall, long. Again, he’s another piece you can put on the field anywhere to cover a guy and shut him down. That’s another great addition that we have to our secondary.”

Bill Belichick’s involvement on defense helping ease the loss of assistant Pepper Johnson: “Having Bill involved with the defense all the time, that’s always helpful. Any time I have a question or there is something going on, I’ll go right to Bill and ask him, ‘Hey we’re doing this, we’re doing that, give me the stuff that I need to know.’”

Welcome back safety Patrick Chung: “Pat, obviously, went somewhere else and it didn’t work out. Coming back, he’s a good football player. He’s a good, competitive, talented football player who obviously is going to go out there and play hard. He has experience here, he knows what to expect, and it’s good to have him back.”

Starting to see some more teammates: “Guys are starting to sprinkle in from traveling around. A lot of people go home and see their families. Now is the time to start coming back and start to get in shape, because we start up on the 22nd [for the voluntary offseason program].”

Motivation is high after AFC title game loss: “I’m very motivated. I need to get back to that game and we have to win it this time. ... It’s a lot of work, and to get back there I have to do it all over again. I’m up for the challenge. I want to get back there. ... I’m going to have a better year than I did last year, that’s my goal.”

Relaying one of his father's mottos: "I like pushing myself. Like my dad always said, 'pain is your friend.' There is nothing wrong with pushing yourself and being in a position that you test your limits."