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Niners already talking about the Patriots

"We're going to see where we are as a defense"

The 49ers had barely gotten off the field after another smothering defensive effort in a victory over Miami before some of their top defenders already were being asked about this week's colossal inter-conference showdown with the New England Patriots. Here's what some of them had to say in an early look toward Sunday's game at New England.

With their eyes now focused on winning their second consecutive NFC West title and capturing the No. 2 seed in the conference for the second year in a row, the Niners (9-3-1) must first get past one of their toughest challenges of the season when they travel to face the defending AFC champions, who already had clinched the AFC East title entering Monday night's game against Houston. That game is...

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