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Bill Belichick Press Conference

Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick talks to the press about the upcoming game in New York against the Jets.To view the transcript, click below.



BB: We made two roster moves yesterday or today we placed Kole Ayi on injured reserve and suspended Terry Glenn. Terry's suspension is for a week. It is a disciplinary matter and it is not injury related. Let me repeat that, not injury related. We stuck with our plan yesterday with [Matt] Chatham and [Willie] McGinest of not doing anything with them. We will put them out there tomorrow and see where they are tomorrow. [Bryan] Cox and Ted Johnson both practiced with the defense as well as running the scout team. So they are back out on the field. It is good to see them back out there. We will just evaluate that later in the week and see how it goes. Okay, any questions at all?

Q: If it is not injury related does that preclude you from being able to put him on IR [Injured Reserve]?

BB: It is not injury related. It is a disciplinary matter.

Q: Obviously many people saw Terry on TV Sunday how much of a factor is that interview and what he said?

BB: None, none. It's none. This is not an injury matter. This is about something that happened yesterday. It is a disciplinary matter that occurred yesterday.

Q: Did Terry refuse to practice yesterday?

BB: It is a disciplinary matter and really that is all…we have been down this road before fellas. We have been down this road before and I am not going to comment on the specifics of team discipline. I don't think it is right to do it. It will be handled internally as it has been.

Q: Not what it was, but it did happen on the practice field yesterday?

BB: I am not going to comment on the…it happened yesterday, it's done, that's it. It's a one-week's suspension.

Q: Terry obviously has a lot of talent and a lot of potential how sad is it that he has not shown a consistent desire to make himself what he could be in the NFL?

BB: Each player in this league comes in with the same opportunities. I mean, really, they have the same opportunities. They get a chance to practice and a chance to play and it is up to each individual to make his career whatever it is. Sometimes there are bumps along the road and I think we all have that players, coaches and so forth. In the end you have the opportunities and you do with them what you will.

Q: With the suspension is he out of the facility for the week?

BB: Yes that is right. That's correct.

Q: Will he be on the sideline on Sunday?

BB: He will be off of the premises until next week. It is a one-week suspension.

Q: Did you deliver the news to him personally?

BB: Yes.

Q: What was his reaction?

BB: I will let Terry speak to that.

Q: Will he back here on Monday then?

BB: You will have to ask him.

Q: When does the suspension expire?

BB: Monday.

Q: So it is a one game suspension, it is not a full week?

BB: Well we have been through this before. This is not the first time it has happened. That's the way we have handled it in the past and this is consistent with that, whether it be Tony Simmons or whoever.

Q: This has been a very distracting thing all year round…

BB: Is this a news breaking event?

Q: …when does it come to the point where you just say, 'I have had it?'

BB: Well I am not trying to make any determination on the future right now. I am dealing with the situation as it is. That's the way I have dealt with it all year. I said in training camp that I hoped that we could resolve this and that I wanted to work to resolve it in training camp and I still feel that way, but based on what happened this is what I had to do.

Q: Doesn't there come a time though when you can just give somebody only so many chances just talking in general, not Terry specifically?

BB: That is not about Terry, that is not about Terry. I think as a coach you always have to evaluate when it is time to move on, when it is time to try to take a different tact, when it is time to mix things up a little bit and when it is time to stay the course. I mean those are decisions you have to make all the time and they will be made. Sooner or later you have to try to make a decision as to how you want to try to approach it and that's my job, that's what I will do. But I am not saying that that's…that is the way that it is with every player. That is the way it is with every situation. You have to decide what you want to do in those situations whether it is players or strategy getting ready for a game or whatever it is.

Q: Does this muddy the water for you in your decision injury related to keep him on a week to week thing or put him on IR, does this affect that in any way?

BB: No, no it is not injury related.

Q: I understand that but it is just another week that he is not going to be able to play, you always talk about the less weeks you contribute are you better off, I mean he still has an injury problem…

BB: Well that is a whole separate issue, but this is a disciplinary matter it is not a medical matter or injury matter.

Q: If there wasn't the disciplinary matter would you expect to be using him this week?

BB: Well I would have to see him on the practice field.

Q: And he didn't practice yesterday right?

BB: That is correct.

Q: Did you expect him to practice yesterday, you listed him as probable?

BB: Right, well we didn't get to that point.

Q: Was he supposed to bring his helmet and his pads?

BB: I am not going to…I think we have been through this before. We can keep going around the same block. I am really not going to discuss the specifics of any disciplinary matter on the team. I haven't done it in the past and I am not going to do it now.

Q: He was listed as probable because the doctors told you that he could practice I assume?

BB: It has been six weeks since the injury, he's gotten better.

Q: Has he filed a grievance?

BB: You can ask Terry all of the questions that you want about those specific things.

Q: I didn't know if maybe the league would have notified you if he did?

BB: Yeah, I really can't tell you.

Q: Is Terry here?

BB: Terry is not on the premises, no.

Q: Just in general, not this specific case, but would talking on a cell phone during a practice is that against team rules?

BB: I am not going to…we can go through all of the team rules again, but I am not going to discuss the team rules, I am not going to discuss team discipline. It is an internal matter. It is handled within the team. That is the way it has been and that is the way it is going to be.

Q: Excuse me for asking the question that was asked, but we were late setting up our camera, can you give me the official statement for why he was suspended?

BB: It was a disciplinary matter. It was not and I repeat not, for the camera, medical. It is disciplinary.

Q: Is there an exact term you place on that?

BB: It is a disciplinary matter.

Q: When did you tell him?

BB: Today. Anything else? Does anybody care about the Jets?

Q: There has been quite a rivalry with these two teams, what do you see as the story line for this game?

BB: The story line for this game, I think you have two teams that both have winning records that are in a fight that are in the last third of their season and it is a big division game in New York.

Q: It is a little different for this rivalry given the past, that it is just about football, is that a little bit of relief for you?

BB: Well it has always been about football for me so that's the way I look at it. That is really where the game is decided between the white lines and that's the way it has always been.

Q: The first game between the two teams was so far back, where are the two teams now, how different are they from the first time they played?

BB: Quite a bit. I think there is a big difference. I think both teams have changed quite a bit. Just looking at, because you go back and look at the tape and I went back and saw it and things were a lot different. There were guys that were playing in that game that either won't play in this game or may not play as significant a part. Scheme-wise I think that both teams have traveled and modified what they were doing from the second week in the season or the second regular season game. So I think that both teams have found a little bit of a different identity, let's put it that way then where they were after week two. I think those are some of the things that strike me. The Jets, what they have done the last few weeks in terms of turnovers, their run defense, they have added a player in [Santana] Moss who I am sure will as the season goes on will probably be a bigger contributor for them. They have changed a little bit there and they were in a transitional period with their defensive line. They just brought in a couple of guys at the end of the preseason and they kind of transitioned that around a little bit since then. Of course there are a lot of constants in terms of Curtis Martin and Mo Lewis and Marvin Jones and James Farrior and Vinny Testaverde and Wayne Chrebet and all of that too. So it's not like they changed their uniforms or anything, but I think there are some changes. Of course obviously we know what ours are, but even defensively we have transitioned from where we were at that point which is mainly a three-man guard bubble type defense to more of a four-man line in the last few weeks. We have probably been, percentage-wise bringing more pressure than we did at that point in the season. So there is a contrast there. [Tom] Tupa was not sure whether he was going to punt, it was his first game back. He has now been pretty steady in there. So there are some subtle changes and then there are some more significant ones.

Q: What did you see from Johnson and Cox yesterday?

BB: Well it was good to see them both back out on the field working. They worked on both the defensive side of the ball and the scout team. They both took a good number of reps. As you would expect, they have been out for a little while so I think they are in a process of working their way back, but it was good to see them out there, good to see them working and we will make the evaluation later on in the week. It was encouraging to see them back with the team rather than having to rehab.

Q: Cox said yesterday that he wouldn't be the one to say he couldn't play that you guys would have to tell him he couldn't, is it your sense that he can move laterally well enough that…

BB: Well I think we will have to see that as we go through the week. I hate to jump in there after the first practice because sometimes guys go out there the first time in awhile and they are a little rusty and they are feeling their way a little bit. Then the second and the third day it progressively gets significantly better. Sometimes they go out their the first day and when they come back the second day they are sore, they are tight, it feels worse than it did when they went out the first day and you just don't know how that is going to go. So I think until you can put a couple of days together and really see whether there is going to be improvement or whether we plateau and it is going to be another week before it improves or whatever the case is that really is what those two or three consecutive practice days show you. Until we do it I don't think we know for sure what that is going to bring.

Q: Given your situation at linebacker and the way the Jets play how many more options does it give you to have Cox and Johnson back?

BB: It helps a lot. I think that we are in a situation at linebacker that is pretty tenuous to be honest with you. We have got Matt Chatham who is banged up and McGinest who is a little banged up and Ted Johnson and Bryan Cox who just came back to practice so we have four guys that there are some questions marks about basically all at the same position. We just put Ayi on injured reserve so that really is a fifth guy. When you get them all there at that spot as a coach that is concerning. You don't know if you've got them. You don't know if you don't have them. If you count on them and they are not there you have got problems. If you don't work them and then put them in there and expect them to do the things you want them to do without any real preparation that doesn't always work out either. So that puts us in a bind. The players who have been playing Roman Phifer and Tedy Bruschi and Mike Vrabel have not only done a real good job for us on defense, but they have been involved in the kicking game and at least two if not three phases of the special teams. You have to make the decision of do you want to limit their role in the kicking game with a little bit of a lack of depth to take it over anyway and I am sure it will affect the quality of play or do you keep going and just ask them to keep doing more. I think to me the good thing is that there is a little light at the end of tunnel because these guys are coming back. It is just a question of when that is going to happen. One guy is on injured reserve, but the other four I think there is no doubt that they will be able to help us it is just a question of when, but as a coach that is always a concern for you when you can't control the timeframe.

Q: With their offense do you prefer, if you had the choice, to go 3-4 or 4-3?

BB: We have the flexibility to do both and I think it is good that we do. Some of it depends on personnel. It depends on who we have available and what we feel like our best combinations are and sometimes it depends on what we are going up against, that we can feel like we might match-up better in one type of a set as opposed to another. But because there is a lot of carryover and we have been working on them all year and they are really both, I think we are comfortable in either one, I think it does give us some flexibility when we run into some personnel problems. We ran into them earlier in the year in the beginning of the season when [Richard] Seymour was down, when Brandon Mitchell was coming back from his injury, when Willie was also coming back from his injury we were really down on defensive linemen. At that point in time we actually had quite a bit of depth at linebacker when we had people like Marty Moore and some of the people we were talking about they were all healthy. We had a pretty good rotation inside with Bruschi, Cox and Ted Johnson and we had a good rotation outside with McGinest, Vrabel and Phifer. We also added a little more depth with like I said Marty Moore and [Larry] Izzo and those guys. That can shift in a hurry and we can see that they sands have shifted.

Q: Tom [Brady] seems to have some good numbers in the red zone…

BB: Real good.

Q: What does he do well down there?

BB: Just on that I think that our red zone both offensively and defensively this year is significantly better than it was last year. Our point production this year is much better than last year. The Jets, just in contrast to that, are right there with us. I think that we are pretty much neck and neck with them in terms of red area performance on both sides of the ball. I think the thing that Tom does well is, two things, he sees the field extremely well on all plays, but I think that is even more important in the red area because it just happens quicker. There is less time, there is less space to spread the defense out, you have to see the opening and get it in there in a quicker amount of time and he does a good job of that. The other thing that's helped us in the red area is our running game. We have seen Antowain [Smith] this year run a number of balls into the end zone where basically it looked like he was going to get stopped short of the goal line and he either broke a tackle or moved the pile or whatever and got the ball in. So I think the combination of a running game down there and knowing that the defense has to respect that running game and your ability to run the ball in opens up some things for you in the passing game. We have scored a number of touchdowns this year on play-action passes where the draw of the running game created some openings to throw it. Tom has done a good job, the running game has been a big help both in scoring and in assisting the passing game.

Q: When you look at the Jets ability to force turnovers have you been able to analyze exactly how they have done that?

BB: Yeah, sure. We have looked at all of the turnovers. It is probably, as you would expect, a combination of things. They have done a good job of stripping the quarterback, of course [John] Abraham is number one on the hit parade there, but they have also gotten some strips from linebackers and Ray Mickens on a corner blitz and things like that. He got [Jay] Fiedler off of the backside, so they have gotten some plays there. I think their linemen [Shane] Burton, [Steve] Martin, [Rick] Lyle, [Shaun] Ellis do a good job of getting their hands up, they have tipped a number of balls because they get in the throwing lane, they have a good awareness. Then the linebackers are a very active group and they certainly cause their share by…like against San Francisco Farrior stripped [Eric] Johnson, they do a good job of coming in there the first guy making the tackle and then the second guy, again it is a very experienced group, the second guy will come in there and rake the ball out and they have had their share that way and then they have had some interceptions. Damien Robinson and Victor Greene have done a good job in the deep part of the field and Aaron [Glenn], Marcus [Coleman] and Ray Mickens have made their plays on balls that are either poorly thrown or they get a good jump on the ball and make the play. It has been a combination of both there. Marcus had a big interception against New Orleans in the end zone. Aaron had a big interception against Miami on the tipped ball out there. Damien Robinson and Green have both picked off…Green ran one in against Miami and I think Robinson had one against, he had a couple against, one called back against New Orleans, but he's had two or three in there too. So it is really spread around pretty good. A lot of people are contributing and I am sure that they are really believing and buying into hustling to the ball, being alert and trying to take advantage of any kind of carelessness by the offense.

Q: Can you give Abraham extra attention or do Lewis and Ellis not allow you to do that?

BB: Yeah I mean I think it is a double edge sword there because the more attention you give to Abraham then the less you can put on Marvin Jones and Lewis and Ellis and Farrior and those guys, but at the same time Abraham is one of the best pass rushers we have seen this year. He is clearly one of the best we have seen. He has good upfield quickness, he gets off on the ball well, he has good body lean, he stays low, he can run the corner and get the edge. So he is definitely a guy that you have to contend with. You have to know where he is at all times. You just can't go out there and snap the ball and block him just like you are blocking any old guy. He is a big threat off of the edge. We have played him three times and we have had problems with him in every game. On the other hand the other guys, they are pretty good too. We are going to have to pick our spots. If we want to get help we are going to have to pick our spots and make sure that we are not too light on some of the other playmakers they have on that side of the ball

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