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Bill Belichick Postgame Press Conference Transcript

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick addresses the media during his postgame press conference at Gillette Stadium on Saturday, December 24, 2011.

BB: Well, it wasn't our best effort of the season. But we've got to give the players a lot of credit for coming back in the second half, down 17-0. They played a good enough half of football. Happy to win. Happy to win. We tee it up here again next week against Buffalo, but it's a good way to go into the little Christmas break here for a couple days, recharge, come back and hopefully be able to finish strong.  

Q:  It seems like the last three games you guys have been able to overcome something. Is this a team that has shown up more than you expected at the beginning of the season?  

BB: Well, we always expect to do that.  

Q: So more or less?  

BB:  I don't know. I have no idea. We try to go out there and play hard and win every week. That's what we try to do every week. Our goals are high.  

Q: Regarding the challenges you were dealing with on the offensive line as far as personnel – can you explain what was going on with Matt Light before the game?  

BB: Matt's ankle was … he just wasn't able to push off on it, so we were scrambling around there. And then Logan [Mankins] played a few plays and then he went out, so we had to take what was left.  

Q: Why did you feel moving Logan Mankins there was the best decision?  

BB: Because of the game plan and everything that we were doing, we thought it was the best thing to do. But then that didn't last long. It knocked us out of some other personnel groupings and we got down to the end of the game and we didn't have our goal-line group and things like that, so we had to try to run the ball. We were down there on the goal line with multiple receivers in the game, things like that. But we just didn't have our big people groupings.  

Q:  It seems like you settled down with the protection a little bit. Was there anything you guys did differently or did you just get on the same page?  

BB: No, I don't think there was a lot we did differently. Maybe we did it a little bit better. They mixed it up like they always do. We just didn't do a lot of things well. We didn't really do anything well. We didn't throw, we didn't catch, we couldn't get open, we couldn't block, we couldn't tackle, we couldn't cover, we couldn't rush, couldn't return kicks, couldn't cover them. Pick a winner.  

Q: At the start of the second half, it seemed like you went with a lot of no-backs. Why did you feel that was the best thing to do?  

BB: We used it in the first half.  

Q:  Can you talk about Vince Wilfork? His fumble recovery led to a score.  

BB: They made a mistake, the ball bounced right to us, and we recovered it, so that was great.  

Q: Did you see Stephen Gostkowski's tackle?  

BB: It's tough from across the way. I saw him trip him up, but I didn't really get a good look at it.  

Q: What was your sense as for how big of a play that was?  

BB: That looked like he was running pretty fast going through there, but I didn't really get a good look at it.  

Q: What do you say at the half when nothing is going well?  

BB: We needed to do everything better. There wasn't really one thing we were doing that was, I'd say, overall good enough. We had to do a better job of coaching [and] playing, like I said; I just gave you a list of everything. We just didn't do a good job in any phase of the game in any area. I know we're capable of more than that and the players showed that. They responded. It wasn't perfect in the second half and we got a couple breaks, but we made a few plays on our own, so that's good. We were able to come out on top, but we dug ourselves a big whole there.  

Q: It looked like Tom Brady was injured on his nose.  

BB: His nose?  

Q: Yes, he had a cut on his nose.  

BB: We just walked off the field. Everybody finished the game…we'll see how they are. I don't know. I wouldn't be too worried about his nose.  

Q:  What did you think of Stevan Ridley's running?  

BB: I think Stevan has run well for us all year. He had really a couple strong runs today, ran through a couple tackles. There are still a lot of things he could do better, but he made some plays and there are other plays that could have been better. But he runs hard with the ball.

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