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Bill Belichick Conference Call Transcript

Posted Oct 3, 2012

New England Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick addresses the Denver media during his conference call on Wednesday, October 3, 2012.

On how he views the Broncos
“Denver is a good football team, as always. They’re well-coached. [Head Coach] John [Fox] does a real good job. [He’s] one of the toughest guys to coach against in the league. They have a very good staff and a lot of good players. They’ve gone toe-to-toe with two of the best teams in the league, Atlanta and Houston, and had a big win last week obviously against Oakland. Pittsburgh on opening night – that was an impressive game, too. We know they’re a good football team. Last year doesn’t really mean much. Everybody’s past that.”

On his assessment of QB Peyton Manning
“Looks real good, as he always does. Sharp, accurate, handles the game well and he’s clearly one of the very top guys we play against. He does everything well.”

On if Manning has improved on his game through the years
“I think Peyton’s one of the players that just really works hard all the time, works hard at everything. Lots of preparation every week and all the fundamentals: his footwork, throw mechanics, ball handling, all those things. I know he works on those things on a regular basis. You can see it on the film. He does an excellent job really in every part of the game. Just at his throwing, his decision making, down-the-field throws, throws to the backs, flip screens, his footwork, avoiding people in the pocket, throwing on the run, ball handling, play action, all those things. I don’t think there’s really any weakness in his game. He works hard at all the little things and you can see it on film. They all show up.”

On the defense New England presents against Manning
“I think he’s a very tough competitor, tough guy to play against. You’ve got to try to really work hard to take away things that you feel like he wants to do and make it hard for him to see exactly what you’re going to be in. We try to do that every week but I don’t think anybody that we play against is any better at it than he is in terms of recognizing what the defense is in and where they’re weak and vulnerable and how to get to plays that hurt it. That’s definitely one of the things we have to do a good job of this week with Peyton.”

On WR Brandon Lloyd fitting into the New England Offense
“Good. Brandon’s been productive for us. He’s worked hard, worked a lot on the things that we’ve asked him to do relative to the timing with [New England QB] Tom [Brady], things like that. He’s been a pleasure to coach and he’s been a very productive player for us and I’m glad we have him on our team because he’s done well.”

On what Belichick liked about Lloyd
“He led the league in receiving two years ago. He does a lot of things well. Great hands, quickness in and out of breaks, makes plays down the field, intermediate routes, get open against single coverage, does a good job on his own coverage, makes some very good catches with his hands, able to adjust to the balls that are thrown pretty much anywhere. All those things.”

On Broncos and former Patriots C Dan Koppen
“Dan had a great career here for us, and he was a part of a lot of our wins and a lot of our seasons and championships, so it will be a little bit different looking at him on the other side of the field. We see that every week with a player we’ve had here that’s changed teams, and vice-versa. We’ve had players that have played with Denver the last year or two. I think that’s part of the NFL. He’s a very smart, sharp guy. As much as he’s gone against our defense and our players, he’s pretty familiar with them, as we are with him. [I’m] not sure if there’s an advantage there or not. We’ll just have to go out and do a solid job and execute what we want to do. I think that’s the most important thing, is how the teams perform and execute.”

On whether the last game with the regular officials flowed better than the previous games with replacement officials
“I think that whole aspect of the game is something that’s out of our control. Right now, we’re just focused on preparing for the game and doing the best we can and me doing the best that I can to prepare the team and coach the team and make the decisions on game day that I can to help the team win. Whatever else happens that’s beyond our control, we’ll just have to take it as it comes. I’m just really trying to focus on the job that I have to do and not worry about everything else.”

On New England RB Brandon Bolden
“I think Brandon had a real good career at Mississippi. He was a good player in, of course, a real good conference. He’s had a productive year since he’s gotten here offensively, both in the running game and in the passing game, and in the kicking game. He’s been a good player for us on special teams. He’s also done well running the ball, passing the ball, and in pass protection, so he’s a sharp kid. [He] works hard, [he’s] been on the field every day. He’s out there working hard, trying to get better every day, and he’s making a lot of improvement. Where we got interested was just his production as a college player in a good conference, going up against eventual NFL players. A lot of guys are going to get drafted from that conference. You’ve seen him against real good people, and he performed well in that setting.”

On Broncos RB Willis McGahee
“[He was a] real talented player coming out of Miami. [He is a] big, strong, fast guy that has good run instincts. I think you still see those qualities. You see him running over people and breaking tackles. He has good run vision, and can find the holes. He has good patience, and knows how to use his blocking when he gets in the open field or when guys start to tackle him, he does a good job of breaking tackles, getting his head down, running with power, and he’s elusive in the secondary. He continues to perform well, and I have a lot of respect for Willis.”

On how he assesses his secondary at this point in the season
“I think our whole team would all fall into about the same category no matter what group you asked about. We’ve done some good things and there are some things we need to improve on. That would be true for really any group that you ask about. There are some things we need to do better, and that we need to improve on. That would be true for any group that you ask about. We’ve had a bunch of interceptions in the secondary and we’ve had some good plays and had our moments. There have been other plays that we need to play better and we need to coach better.”

On the influence of Jack Del Rio as the defensive coordinator
“I think the Broncos are a good defensive team. Then again, they’ve played against some very good offenses and given them plenty of problems. They give you a lot of different looks. They change up what they’re doing with their pressures and their alignments and their personnel groupings. They do a good job of keeping you off balance. I don’t really know who is doing what over there. You’d have to talk to somebody with the Broncos about that, on the coaching staff with [Head Coach] John [Fox], Del Rio and the rest of the defensive staff and so forth. I really couldn’t comment on that, but I would just say the defensive group as a whole is very disruptive, they are definitely improved in the secondary from where they were last year when we played them. They’re getting their hands on a lot of balls. They’re active. Tight man coverage. [DE Derek] Wolfe has definitely helped them up front, along with they’ve got two of the best edge guys in the game in [DE Elvis] Dumervil and [LB Von] Miller. It’s a good football team. They’re well-coached. Whoever is exactly responsible for what, like I said, I don’t really know how that breaks down.”

On if the Denver running game makes it more difficult to prepare for Peyton Manning
“I think Peyton has always used the running game well, whether it was with Edgerrin James or [Joseph] Addai, or in this case [RB Willis] McGahee. Whoever it is, he certainly understands how to attack defenses and where defenses are light, whether it’s in the running game, or the outside passing game, or play action or down the field or misdirection plays, whatever it happens to be – Peyton does a really good job of anticipating them, seeing them, getting his team in place to attack them, and certainly the run game is a part of it. I think he’s always used that as a good weapon against the defense, and it has complemented the passing game. Not just McGahee, but all of the backs are talented. They’ve all made plays I’ve been impressed with. McGahee, of course [RB Knowshon] Moreno is a good player, [RB Ronnie] Hillman has made some big plays, he’s been impressive, an elusive guy. Lance Ball, they’ve got a good group of backs. McGahee is good, though, but whichever one of them is in there could be a problem. So we have to be ready for all of them.”

On if this game will feature two of the greatest quarterbacks of all time playing against each other
“I would have to think so.”

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