By A. Sherrod Blakely
CSNNE.com Celtics Insider
Follow @sherrodbcsn FOXBORO With the season opener just a couple days away, these are anxious times for the New England Patriots -- and it's not just the players, either.
Anxiousness. Butterflies. Whatever you want to call it, both players and coaches alike are feeling it.
"Once the game starts, like the players say, after that first kickoff, you're into the game," said Pats coach Bill Belichick.
The Patriots don't have much of a choice if they want to get off to a good start for the 2011 season which begins at Miami on Monday night.
"We're the only game on TV," said Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo. "So it's going to be a big game for us and a chance to showcase our skills and what we've done (in the preseason). We've worked hard. Hopefully it pans out in the game for us."
Dealing with Dolphins receiver Brandon Marshall will be challenging for the Pats. Miami beefing up its line on both sides of the ball will likely cause some problems as well.
But there's an even bigger foe for New England to be concerned with -- the unknown.
"There's a lot of things going into this game, your'e just not sure about," Belichick said. "Your team, their team, the matchups and all that. There's more of a comfort level when you have more evidence. But it's exciting."