FOXBOROUGH -- A few nuggets from the post-game media access today:
1) Logan Mankins pulls no punches. Summing up the Patriots' performance, left guard Logan Mankins said simply: "You can't beat Pop Warner teams doing that."
2) Matthew Slater: 'I feel I cost my team the game.' Rookie Matthew Slater, who couldn't handle a third-quarter kickoff that was recovered by the Steelers, didn't avoid the media onslaught. He answered questions about the costly miscue, saying: "There is no excuse for it. You have to field the ball first and I didn't do my job. It's as simple as that ... I'm frustrated. I feel like I cost my team the game."
3) Ellis Hobbs explains his absence on kickoffs. Cornerback Ellis Hobbs, the team's regular kickoff returner, explained why he wasn't on the field for the third-quarter kickoff that Matthew Slater couldn't handle. "Sometimes your body can only handle so much. It came to it where I had spent a lot, started cramping up a bit, and they tried to feed me with a couple things and I tried to do a couple things myself," he said. "I started throwing up out there a little bit. I got sick a little bit. I tried to make it happen but sometimes your body won't allow you too."
4) Bill Belichick's opening statement. "We had a lot of opportunities out there today and weren't able to take advantage of the ones that we had. Pittsburgh took advantage of theirs. That's really the difference in the game -- obviously the turnovers were a huge part of it. We have to do a better job taking care of the ball and take advantage of our opportunities. I really felt like we had enough out there."