New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick addresses the media during his conference call on Monday, October 13, 2008.
BB: Well, we just got in a little while ago and are just getting things set up and reorganized here in Foxborough. We are running a little bit behind but from what I have seen of the game, which is a good part it, it is not much different than we saw last night. There were a handful of plays that caused us a lot of trouble and unfortunately, it very much overrode the other plays, which we were competitive on. That is really the story of the game other than the kicking game where we really didn't do much to help ourselves field position wise like we have in some many other games this year. Offensively and defensively it was a few plays that if we had played a little better, the game would have been more competitive. But we just have to do a better job on that.
Q: What did you see from Mark LeVoir when he filled in for Nick Kaczur?
BB: He did a pretty good job. We were throwing the ball a lot when he was in there. It didn't seem like there were a whole lot of problems there. It could always be better, I'm not saying that, but there weren't a whole lot of problems at that spot.
Q: Can you talk about your decision to stay out west and what impact it had on yesterday's game?
BB: I think it was the best thing we could have done for our team and I think that we had a good week of preparation. I think it worked out well. I don't think that was a problem.
Q: What can you do to get more big plays out of the passing game?
BB: I think the big thing is to hit the ones that we have an opportunity to hit. When the defense takes those plays away, I don't think it is good football to throw it down there for the sake of throwing it down there. That's not something that we really try to do. When we have the opportunities to hit them, we just have to connect on them. We will just keep working harder on that but that is really the time to let it go. We just have to try to hit a few more of them when we get that opportunity.
Q: Did San Diego give you some opportunities to hit some big plays that maybe you weren't able to take advantage of or did they just take it away?
BB: We threw the ball down the field and we were close on a couple but we just couldn't quite connect on them. There were a lot of times when they played pretty soft and gave us a lot of space underneath and we were able, a good part of the time, to throw the ball successfully there. I think that's what you want to try to do; take advantage of where the defense's coverage is softer. But you have to be able to convert them and if we could do that more consistently, as far as the down field throws, when we have the opportunity to hit them - we need to make the connections.
Q: It seemed like the goal line stand to start the second half really turned the game around.
BB: It was a key point in the game; there is no doubt about that.
Q: Are there any injury updates?
BB: No. Like I said we just got back a little while ago. I am not sure if anybody knows. You come in after a game, I think we have talked about this one hundred times before, it is not the best time to make an analysis on what happened during a game. Sometimes it appears to be one thing and it's something else and vice versa. We will give it a little time, have the guys come in tomorrow, get checked out and see where we are when we go out to practice on Wednesday.
Q: They were able to hit big plays in their passing game. How much do you put fault on the lack of pass rush and how much were breakdowns in the secondary?
BB: Anytime the ball gets thrown over your head in the secondary, that's not good. It is every defensive backs job to keep the ball in front of them. The intent is to never get it thrown over your head whether it is a pass rush or not. That is the last line of defense. You have to prevent the big play and if they hit them than they can hit them in front of you. Ultimately, it has to fall. The long passes have to fall; the long passes have to fall on the secondary. You are always looking for more pass rush and tighter coverage but you have to defend the deep ball first. We didn't do a good job of that last night.
Q: I asked you last night about the Malcom Floyd play, you said you didn't have enough [evidence] watching it live. Did you have a chance to go back and watch that play of the touchdown and take a look if his knee had been down or not?
BB: I still haven't seen it yet. Really it didn't make any difference whether it was or wasn't. If you are not able to see it during the game and you are not able to get a replay than I wouldn't challenge it based on no evidence at all, and that's what I would have been going off of last night. Whether he was or wasn't, I am sure you can analyze yourself. I'm seeing it too far away and standing on ground level, I couldn't tell whether it was or wasn't. Then we never got a good look at it.
Q: Do you have any idea what the schedule will be like for this week? The game being Monday night, could it possibly be an unusual schedule this week?
BB: The players will be in on Wednesday. Is that what you were looking for?
Q: Yes. Part of it…
BB: We haven't nailed down everything for the end of the week but the players will be in on Wednesday.
Q: I just know Saturday is normally a walkthrough day but with the game on Monday, I didn't know if you would use it as something different than a walkthrough day.
BB: Like I said, we just got in early this morning and we are still going through the game from last night and then we will talk about our schedule going forward for this week. [We will] try to do what we feel like is in the best interest of the team and what we feel the team needs most. Right now we haven't really gotten to that point because we are still, as I mentioned, going through the San Diego game and want to get all the corrections out of the way - things we need to talk about from there before we get started on Denver and the whole week of preparation for the Broncos. If you are trying to make vacation plans for the weekend you will have to hold off on them a little bit longer.
Q: Aside from the big plays from their passing game, it seemed like you were able to contain LaDainian Tomlinson for the most part. Was that the case when you went back and looked at the film?
BB: I think that on the big plays, those handful of plays, they gained a lot more yards than they gained on the other 50 [plays]. I thought we played competitively on third down. I thought we played competitively in the running game. I don't think we were competitive for the most part on the short and intermediate routes. Tomlinson got out there on a wide route late in the game and got a few yards on that. But overall I think it was a pretty competitive game defensively other than the big plays, but you can't dismiss those. I think there were a lot of positives in terms of the overall way we defended them but not on those handful of plays. It is a little bit the same thing on offense too. We had a lot of positive plays. We had some success in the running game. We had some success throwing the ball. But we weren't able to put enough points on the board and weren't able to make enough key plays in the game when we needed to; that's why the score was the way it was. I don't think the competitiveness of the game was reflected in the score. We did a lot of good things but we offset it with missing some opportunities and not being able to make a few plays at the right time.