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Bill Belichick Press Conf. Transcript - 09/07/2002

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BB: No updates for today. No injuries.

Q: In terms of stopping the Pittsburgh receivers, what is the approach going to be there?

BB: Well they are real physical receivers; Hines (Ward) and Plaxico (Burress) are both real physical so we'll have to be physical with them, they're aggressive coming off the line, when we played them last year there were a number of interference calls. We got them, they got them, it was very physical. It was head-to-head combat there on the line of scrimmage. That will be a significant match-up, but I'm sure it will be a physical one. We like to play up there and they like to be aggressive on the line.

Q: Was that one of the things that you think worked in your favor last year? Did they get a portion of the game that they maybe didn't expect, you guys being more physical?

BB: Well I think they expected our corners to be up by the line, we were up there a lot.

Q: Kenyatta Jones is a little inexperienced at that position. Are you concerned a little bit about that?

BB: It's a tough match-up, both of those players are good players. Aaron Smith is real good defensive end and (Jason) Gildon has been the best pass rusher now for three or four years whatever it is. Yeah, that's an area we had trouble with the last game, Aaaron Smith and Gildon at the right tackle spot. It's no doubt that Kenyatta is going to have to play well.

Q: From what you've seen so far are you confident, he's come a long way obviously in camp, that he can handle this match up right away?

BB: Well we'll see, he'll get challenged, and we'll see how that goes. He's played against some good people in the preseason starting with (Michael) Strahan of the Giants and it's a different level and a different challenge but I think Kenyatta has come along.

Q: You have had pretty good success against Jerome Bettis in the past. From year-to-year can you take some of the same information or is it tough because the personnel around him might change?

BB: I think he's got a certain style of play that isn't going to change too much and he's very effective at it. I wouldn't change it if I were him. There are schemes and the match ups to get to Bettis, that's really another significant aspect of the game, to beat the blockers that are in front of Jerome. When he runs, he's a guy that has real good vision for a big man, he sees the holes well.

Q: Has anything changed because he's a little healthier than he was last year? Is there any real change in the approach?

BB: He's probably just better. What we want try to do is to get as many people as we can to the ball when he's got it and that's always been the plan. When he gets you one-on-one he's elusive enough to make you miss. He's got the power to do that.

Q: And he's got two pretty good back-ups as well.

BB: Very good, very good.

Q: When you were with the Giants under Bill Parcells years ago, you were on some teams that were coming into a season as defending Champions. As a head coach now, have you taken anything that coach Parcells used to do?

BB: I really only in that situation one time and that was the '87 season. 1991 I was in Cleveland, after we beat Buffalo in the '90 Super Bowl, that would be Super Bowl 25. The '87 season was the only one I really experienced relative to what you're asking and that was the strike season, so the strike came after the second game against Green Bay and that lasted about four weeks, three or four weeks whatever it was, and then the team came back, I think the strike issue was it wasn't bigger than the game, but it was an undertone that was going through that year kind of unlike any other year. With everybody talking about going on strike and when they came back and the affects of it, that kind of thing. There was a certain percentage of everybody's focus on that. We were 0-2 and then we came back after the strike we were 0-5. When you get off to an 0-5 start it kind of puts the whole season in a real narrow timeline, there's so little margin for error when you are at that point. So it was an unusual year. I don't if any other Super Bowl teams had a start like that, you can forget about the strike just starting 0-5.

Q: Your team seemed to avoid distractions last year, obviously Ted Johnson wasn't a huge distraction, but for at least a day, people had their minds wandering elsewhere. Do you ever worry about that?

BB: I think you always try to create an environment so you can get through it, but I worry about it all the time. There are always new challenges to face and I worry about how we're going to face them and try to do the things that either minimize it or make it easier to deal with. You know we had Charlie (Weis) at training camp, so we've had some things that we've had to work our way through, we just try to make the best of it.

Q: There hasn't been much said about Anthony Pleasant/Bobby Hamilton the two ends, which I assume is a good thing, they seem to be consistent year round. Is it really impressive what they continue to do year in and year out?

BB: It really is, it really is. They just have good longevity, they both have a great work ethic, very team oriented and they understand the game, they understand what we're trying to do, they fit well into the scheme of the defense. They both have real good careers.

Q: How important is that for Richard Seymour, learning from people like that?

BB: I think it's been a great experience for Richard. I don't know how you could ask to bring in a young player, Richard or Jarvis Green to be with guys like that Pleasant or Hamilton.

Q: How did Ted Johnson look in practice yesterday?

BB: He did everything he was asked to do like he did on Monday.

Q: Is Tedy Bruschi moving well out there?

BB: Yeah, I don't thing he's going to have a problem, we didn't list him on the injury report, so I'm sure he'll play. He looks like he's come back pretty well.

Q: Terrell Buckley went to training camp a learned a little bit of a new system, but is it still helpful that he played here last year?

BB: Without a doubt. Terrell is a smart guy too, so I know he had to forget a lot of things when he went to Tampa, but now that he's forgotten those Tampa things, he can start remembering the stuff that we have here, and he also a rapport with his teammates, their little signals, their body language or eye contact about 'I know where you are', that unspoken language that you need to have in the secondary, he's got a big jump on that. I'm sure he'll be better in succeeding weeks, as he gets more reps back into the system. He can come in here and understand what we're doing.

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