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Wed., Aug. 24, 2016 12:00 PM to 2:00 PM EDT
Wed., Aug. 24, 2016 4:00 PM to 11:59 PM EDT
Thu., Aug. 25, 2016 12:00 AM to 11:55 AM EDT
Josh McDaniels Conference Call Transcript
Q: Did you feel like Sunday was one of those days where everything clicked?
JM: Definitely. When you go into any week you hope to put together a plan that gives your guys a chance to go out there and execute and play fast and hopefully be productive, and then [when] the players go out and play the way they did it always makes you feel good. There definitely, certainly [are] things we need to do better and we can improve on. I would say [there are] plenty of things over the course of any game that you can do better. But I thought we took care of the football, we maintained a good balance between our run and pass game and we really have been focusing hard on a lot of the situational plays and had some good production on third down, red zone, two-minute offense, those types of things. When your players go out and play the way that our guys did for the most part, it definitely makes you feel good.
Q: We talked to Bill Belichick about the Bye Week and self-scouting and what goes into it. What is going to be your focus with this extra time when it comes to self-scouting?
JM: I think there’s a lot of different ways you could go into a bye week. I think one of the things that anybody will try to do, and we’ve certainly tried to do the best we can at it, is to identify areas that you can make some progress and/or make some improvements or at least make your players aware of some things we need to try to do better. You can’t hit everything in a bye week. It’s too short in terms of time that you have with the payers. But if we find a few things that we feel like can make a difference for us in some area of our games, that’s definitely something you try to get done. I think if you try to tackle 100 things you probably don’t get anything accomplished. We’re in the process now of just trying to look back over the first half of the season and maybe more specifically the last so many games here and try to focus on some things that we think can make us better heading into the last eight games.
Q: Deion [Branch] on the radio mentioned that the way you guys played on Sunday is how you expect to perform each time on the field. Is that a sentiment that you think your entire offense shares?
JM: Coach always tells us that on offense, we go out there for one reason and one reason only -- and he’s he’s 100 percent right -- and that’s to score touchdowns. That’s a simple goal that takes a lot of hard work, preparation, communication and execution to make a reality each week. I think that we went into that game, much like we do every game, trying to give our players a chance to play fast and be aggressive. There will always be an element of the players needing to be alert and aware that something that we haven’t practiced or haven’t shown them could come up. Every team is well coached and has good players and they try to do things to get us out of rhythm and create some negative plays. I thought our guys did a good job of executing against some different looks that we hadn’t seen. St. Louis presented us with some different challenges that we hadn’t necessarily seen before, but our guys followed their rules and reacted and executed even so and I think that’s a good thing and we need to do that on a consistent basis. It’s something that we haven’t necessarily done each week for four quarters and that has to be a focus for us going forward.
Q: Obviously a big day for Rob Gronkowski on Sunday. It seems like there was quite of bit of space in the middle of the field for him to operate with. Is it oversimplifying it to suggest that when you run the ball effectively, that either draws an additional run defender into the box or does something to make the defense vacate the middle of the field a little bit?
JM: I think there’s definitely something to that, [but] I don’t think that all of Rob’s production, or for that matter anybody’s production in the passing game, comes specifically from that. There were some plays that were drop back passes and Rob ran a good route and made some separation at the top of his break and got the football on a few occasions that way. There were some play-action passes that I think got a reaction from the defense and helped us get behind that linebacker level of the defense and create some space for him. I think he caught a screen pass and some other things. But I think in the passing game your production can come from a lot of areas or there could be a lot of reasons why. I think ultimately we have to do a good job of running good routes, making good throws, creating separation and getting open is certainly the key to the passing game. Tom [Brady] was very accurate on Sunday. If we’re fortunate to have some play-actions that assist us in getting open that’s an added benefit. Staying balanced is certainly something that can help the passing game, but I also think it ultimately comes down to guys doing a good job of running their routes and getting open and Tom throwing them the ball. Read