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Patriots Unfiltered Tue Apr 07 | 11:55 AM - 02:00 PM

09/17/00 - Bill Belichick Postgame Press Conf.

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            **B:** That was a game where things kind of swung back and forth. The first half and the second half were quite contrasting for us. In the end it came down to something we have seen before where we couldn't capitalize on our opportunities, all three phases of the game. It is disappointing because there were times where I thought we were on the brink of showing some improvement and being able to do that, but we couldn't get over the hump. There were too many penalties today and that will always hurt you against a team like the Vikings. It is just unfortunate that we weren't able to play more consistently and play a better football game for sixty minutes instead of just playing in spurts all the way through. Eventually that's what we are going to have to learn how to do. I don't really have a timeframe for how long that is going to take, but it is going to get done and hopefully it will be next week.  

Q: Being 0-3 obviously hurts a lot, is it a fear that you have to keep these guys up, to not let them get too down?

B: I don't expect anybody to be happy about being 0-3, but we have a game to play next week against Miami, a division game and we are going to get ready to play it and that is really all that I am going to be focused on.

Q: Is there any explanation as to why the amount of penalties and type of penalties, procedural, late hits are increasing and not decreasing as season progresses?

B: I don't have a real good explanation, no.

Q: Why was (Daunte) Culpepper able to run so easily in the first half obviously you made adjustments in the second half, but what was happening in the first half?

B: We didn't do a good job of controlling him. We weren't fully aware of his speed. He outran us a couple of times. A couple of times we probably could have been in a little better defensive call than we were in, but we didn't do a very good job in the first half. We did a much better job in the second half with that, but that needs to be done earlier.

Q: Troy Brown was not out for punt returns late in the game, but he was still in at receiver, was that just to try to maximize his performance at receiver?

B: We are trying to use all of our people the best way we can and try to get everybody the best opportunity as we can and spread it around.

Q: What about (J.R.) Redmond, was it anything disciplinary?

B: No.

Q: What is the status on Willie McGinest and the prognosis if any?

B: He hurt his leg. I don't think it is anything real serious, but he wasn't able to return today. We probably won't know until Monday or Tuesday.

Q: Have you been able to see what is plaguing the defense on third downs?

B: In the first half it was a combination of things. It was the quarterback scrambling, it was Cris Carter on some option routes, Patrick got us a couple of times too. So it is not as effective as it needs to be. I can't single out one area, but overall it has got to be more consistent as a unit. That really hurt us in the first half because we had a lot of opportunities to get off the field on third down, I mean they would gain a few yards here and there, but we could have got off the field on some third down situations. Penalties hurt us, a combination of things and we just stayed out there too long, that was obvious.

Q: What was the thinking in going for the touchdown instead of the field goal?

B: We thought we had a good play and we thought we would be able to score there.

Q: Your thoughts on Culpepper?

B: I think he is about what we thought he would be. He has got a strong arm, he's athletic, he's got some real good receivers and they have a good running back, so they have a well- balanced offense. It is a nice offensive attack and I think he plays well in it.

Q: Drew Bledsoe threw for 80 yards in the first three quarters and about 120 yards in the fourth quarter, why were you more effective in the fourth quarter on offense?

B: I think that they stayed pretty much with the combination of coverage, they mix coverage and pressure, and they pretty much stayed with it all the way through. We didn't have, particularly in the first quarter we had the drive there, but offensively we didn't have the ball in terms of number of opportunities that much in the first half, so that contributed a little bit to the overall lack of production. A couple of times obviously that is our fault because we had it and didn't do much with it.

Q: This team, now after three games do you start to say to yourself maybe it is not as good a team as we thought it was or do you say we are better than we showed?

B: I haven't lost any confidence in this football team. I am just disappointed in our record and I'm disappointed in our ability as a team, totally as a team, starting with myself all the way down. Not to be able to make enough plays to win these close games. We have got to work harder and find a way to do it. I haven't lost confidence in anybody. I think that we still have a good football team. We need to show a little bit more and then we will have some better results to show for it, but right now we just haven't shown enough to win a game. Until we do that then the record is still the record, I can't deny it.

Q: Have you had experiences in your coaching career were losses like this early have paid off for you later in the season?

B: I don't think losses ever pay off. I think you want to avoid as many of those as you possibly can.

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