“It’s really hard on you,” the Patriots safety said, “but you’re not saying, ‘I can’t do it.’ We make it through it. The more you do it, the easier it gets to make it through an uncomfortable situation.”
“Jarrad is the nicest guy in the world, but when practice starts, he’s really starting to find that other person,” said [trainer Jay] Glazer, who doubles as an NFL reporter for Fox Sports. “We find their breaking point and push them past it. Jarrad Page is a beast now.”
“You can never show your opponent you’re hurting,” Page said, “even when they’re killing us.”
“We work on arm drags, and on the football field, if someone is putting their hands on you, you can use your fist to get it off,” Page said. “If you pound on a guy’s arm throughout the game, he’s not going to want to stick it out there.”
“It’s about being explosive. It’s a lot of stuff you can relate to the field. It teaches you body control, helps put body parts exactly where you want to put them. Football is a violent sport. There’s no better training.”
Much of the focus is mental, with breaking your opponent’s will and thriving in the fourth quarter as goals. How far has Page come? Glazer puts his charges through a crushing three-minute drill to try to break them, one that includes constant 30-second reps. Half of the athletes don’t last three minutes.
“Jarrad did eight minutes the other day,” Glazer said. “He didn’t show any sign of slowing down. Jarrad Page thought he knew what he was capable of. You ought to see him now.”
Tom E. Curran reports a bit more about the Patriots players’ under-cover-off-season workouts under the guidance of trainer Brian McDonough in Foxboro.
“We’re covering all the bases from a strength and conditioning standpoint,” McDonough said. “We have a turf field, a 40-yard sandpit, everything under the sun for strength, a network of people around me providing yoga, physical therapy, pool work, massage, everything I need.”
“It’s a pretty big shift in what they’re used to,” he explained. “Paying for health insurance, paying for someone to train you as opposed to having someone pay you to work out. Their mindset seems to be, ‘Let’s control what is in front of us, what we can control. We’ll be in the best shape possible and let everything fall as it will.”
”[Jerod Mayo is] one of the most pure leaders and respected people I’ve seen. Ever,” McDonough said. “He’s constantly communicating with them, holding everyone accountable. They all do, really. This group has a great dynamic.”
Christopher Price notes Gary Guyton’s reaction to Jerod Mayo making the NFL Network’s Top 100 list:
“The only thing I know is that Jerod’s a great player. To me, he’s the No. 1 player in my eyes,” Guyton said of Mayo. “He does great things. He’s a student of the game. I wish and I pray nothing but the best for him. He’s a good player and a good guy and a good person.”