Patriots head coach Bill Belichick addresses the media during his postgame press conference on Sunday, Decembern 19, 2010.
BB: I think you have to give the players a lot of credit today for playing 60 minutes, fighting through some adversity and coming out with a win at the end, making enough plays to win. It certainly wasn't one of our better games and obviously I've got to do a lot better job preparing the team than what I did this week. We couldn't handle a lot of the basic things that they did and that was disappointing, but we had a few big plays there. It was a game of big plays and fortunately we were able to make a few more than they were and we got a couple good plays there at the end from the defense and the offense set us up with the lead there on the drive before. In the end it worked out, but we obviously have a lot of work to do. I think we need to play better than this or our season won't last much longer.
Q: Have you ever had an offensive lineman return a kick like that?
BB: No, I don't think so. It was a good run. Put up a tackle there on [Charlier] Peprah. Sergio [Brown] cleaned him off. It kind of looked like he was looking to go down, but then they just couldn't really find anybody to tackle him. It was a good job by the kickoff team. They short-kicked us all day, really, with the pooch kicks and the squib kick there. We've been working on those, so it was an alert play by Dan [Connolly], but also by the blocking to get in front of him there and at least get him started.
Q: You guys had two sacks in the last minute or so. Was there anything interesting or different about those play designs?
BB: Well, I think they were trying to come...we were in an odd look. It looked to me like the guard was trying to come out and get him and he beat him off the edge. And then the last couple, I think we were in a three-man rush and the quarterback, [Matt] Flynn, just held the ball trying to get it down the field and we were able to fall back and when he stepped up in the pocket we came back in and got him.
Q: Tully Banta-Cain had the hands-to-the-face penalty. Was it nice to then see him come back and have the sack to end the game?
BB: Yeah, I mean, it's good to win. It's good to win. We had a lot of penalties. Look, these guys call the most penalties of any crew in the league and they called them. We knew it was going to be a tight game and it was. We've just got to do a better job of that. I've got to do a better job preparing the team.
Q: Did Matt Flynn surprise you at all?
BB: No. No, I mean, that's about the way we've seen him play. He played in the preseason. [He] does a good job managing the game. He's a good quarterback.
Q: When you say you weren't prepared for some basic things, can you give some examples?
BB: The stuff that happened. We've just got to do a better job. We've got to do a better job of getting the players ready for those things and we've got to do a better job of executing them when we've got a chance to do them.
Q: Can you comment on the defense's performance in the fourth quarter? At that point I think you had only had the ball for 13 minutes in the game.
BB: Well, our performance was up and down all night, so I think that's the way it was for all four quarters. We had a few good plays, and then we had some bad plays, and then we had a few good plays and then some bad plays. That's the way it was the whole game.
Q: You said a couple times that you have to do a better job of coaching. Do you ascribe more of a difficult game like this to coaching and preparation than to execution?
BB: If we can't execute it, then that's...it's got to come back to coaching at some point, so we've got to do a better job of coaching them.
Q: What did you see on the last Kyle Arrington tackle that set up the fourth-and-one?
BB: I don't think I got a really good look at it. It was on the other side of the field. He ran the under route, right? I mean, it wouldn't have made any difference if they got the first down or not. They had no timeouts left and 15 seconds...Yeah, I guess they could have spiked it...Maybe they could have had another play out of it, yeah. But just being out of timeouts and having to try to run a red-area offense. They didn't really get very many plays off, which was fortunate for us.
Q: With the onside kick to start the game, was that just good execution by them?
BB: Well, I mean, yeah it was good execution by them but it was terrible by us. We can't give that up. I don't care if it's well-executed or not. We've got to do a better job in all three phases of the game; there's no doubt about that. I mean, we made some plays. We made plays on offense. We made plays on defense, made plays on special teams. And we gave them up, too. We gave up a lot of them. We've just got to do a better job. It starts with me.