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Bill Belichick Press Conference

Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick talks to the media about their win over the Chargers, 29-26.To read a full transcript, click on the button below.



BB: Unfortunately we have been on the other end of a couple of games like that so it was really a terrific win for our football team. I thought that they really showed a lot of courage coming back, down by ten points with eight minutes to go in the game or whatever it was eight and a half minutes to go and answering the score there in the third quarter. I am sure that there were some people who didn't think we would be able to do that, but it is a real credit to our players, their attitude and their determination, the way they played the last, counting overtime, probably twenty five minutes of the game. I can't say enough about [Tom] Brady. We really went into the game wanting to throw the ball feeling that they are one of the toughest run defense teams in the league and we knew that it was going to be hard to run against them. We tried to dent them a little bit, but they are very good up there [John] Parrella and Junior [Seau], they are tough, but Tom had a great day throwing the ball, spreading it around, all of the receivers got involved. We got some big plays out of the backs and the wideouts and the tight ends. It was a real good team victory. It was still a little sloppy in some areas. We had, obviously, a terrible day in the kicking game on special teams. We have to get that corrected or eventually that will catch up with us. We had a lot of penalties and a lot of mistakes in the kicking game, but I am just really thrilled for the players and especially the guys that fought so hard out there. Guys like [Joe] Andruzzi basically playing on one leg, the effort they gave to have the kind of results that we had today.

Q: Can you comment on the contributions of Terry Glenn and whether you expected that he would be able to contribute as much as he did today?

BB: I thought that Terry would be able to contribute some. I didn't really know what it would be, but he made some big touches, made a couple of big plays on the sideline and caught the ball well. I am not sure how many plays he was in there for, maybe about a third to a half of them somewhere in that neighborhood maybe it was about a half, but he made some nice plays. He gave us a little lift. Tom threw the ball well and I thought all of the receivers came through and made some clutch plays for us.

Q: The second to last possession in regulation when you guys where down close to the end zone, did you consider going for the touchdown?

BB: Sure, well we were trying to go for the touchdown. I think if we had had maybe a short yardage play on fourth down we might have tried to score, but we knew we needed two scores either way so even if we had gotten the touchdown we would have still needed a field goal. I think it ended up fourth and six or something like that so rather than…if we had missed that play then of course the game would have been over so there was, I don't know three and a half minutes to go in the game something like that, there was plenty of time if we stopped them to get the ball back and that was a huge stop defensively that we made on that third and one with the goal line defense. There were a lot of big plays in the game, but certainly that was one of the biggest.

Q: In the kicking game, what about [Lee] Johnson in particular?

BB: The whole kicking game was just terrible, just terrible. We are not that good enough to create that many opportunities for our opponents in the kicking game. We just can't do that. It has been a strength for us really, that is the worst we have played in the kicking game in a year and a half, since I have been here and we just can't go on like that.

Q: What happened on that punt that got returned, have you ever seen a play like that before?

BB: Yeah, the punter tried to pull the ball down, I guess he thought it was going to get blocked and then lost the ball and they recovered it and picked it up and ran it in. That's the way it looked like to me.

Q: Do you think it would have been blocked?

BB: I couldn't tell from where I was, but whether it is or isn't we don't want to throw the ball on the ground there on the ten yard line with nobody around it, but obviously the punt protection, there was some kind of problem there, I know what the problem was, but there was an issue there as well.

Q: Can you comment on the play where [David] Patten got the interference call, that ended up being an audible by Brady?

BB: It was really a play that we had worked on all week and it actually had looked pretty good during the week and what Tom did was he audibled to an out and up against the blitz. So when San Diego came up and showed the blitz then Tom checked and checked it to an out and up. It looked like Patten was behind the defender there and he made a good throw. I talked to Tom a little bit earlier in the game, well it was in the fourth quarter, but I thought we had two shots there where we were behind the secondary and we overthrew both balls. The main thing I wanted to try to get across to him was to just give us a chance. Don't overthrow it. Just give us a chance, give our receiver a chance to make a play on the ball and he certainly did on that one and then with the penalty that enabled us to create a lot of good field position. But it was a real heads up play by Tom in terms of making the audible, making the check and Tom I thought played with a lot of poise the whole game. He did a real job of stepping up into the pocket and holding onto the ball and hitting some of those throws inside that were…it took a little patience, it took a little discipline to be able to avoid, not avoid there rush, but disregard the rush and step up and throw under pressure, he did a nice job.

Q: Before the game did you find it necessary to monitor Terry's preparedness for the game or talk to him or prep him in anyway?

BB: Yeah we talked to him. Troy [Brown] talked to him last night, Ivan [Fears] talked to him, I spoke to him a little bit before the game. I think that we all understood how we wanted to go into the game and then as I said during the week the plan was just to see how it went. When you get into game conditions and first time out after quite awhile you just never know exactly how it is going to go. I think that Ivan did a nice job with the receivers, rotating and making sure that we had fresh guys and we didn't wear Terry out because he was still able to be fairly effective for the whole game.

Q: Was Terry's mood during the game suggestive of bigger things to come down the road, that he is on the same page as everybody?

BB: I don't know. I wasn't really trying to evaluate everyone's mood during the game, I was just trying to coach it, but I think, as I said, I think all of the players competed hard, fought hard. We had a lot of things go against us in the game and they didn't give up, they didn't get down, they just kept battling, kept fighting and we made enough plays at the end there to be able to come out on top. Even though things did look good there at times the end of the third and the early fourth quarter, that the team didn't show that they responded the way that a team should respond when they are in that situation with more determination and a little bit more resiliency than maybe we have shown some other times in that situation.

Q: For Brady, as a young kid to throw that ball as much as you have had him throw it and not get picked off, what are the keys how is he able to avoid that?

BB: Tom does a good job of seeing the field, I think that is one of his real strengths. Tom can see the field well, he knows what the coverages are, he knows where the people are, he does a good job of not throwing it to where there are too many guys or into a team meeting as we like to call it. That is one of his real strengths. He has never done that [knocks on wood], hopefully we can keep it that way. Whether it be practice or a preseason games, he may make some mistakes and he has overthrown guys and that is something that you have seen come up, it is something that he obviously needs to work on, but one thing he usually doesn't do is throw it to them and that can keep you in business if that doesn't happen.

Q: Did Terry Glenn's presence on the field effect coverages, it seemed like Patten had more opportunities?

BB: It looked to me like San Diego played…I didn't see any new coverages from them let's put it that way. The coverages that they played were coverages that they had shown in earlier games this year or in their scheme last year…we have done quite a bit of extensive work on San Diego. I don't think that they put in any new coverages, I think that they played about as we had seen them do it before so I think you would have to ask them that, but I didn't notice anything that was that dramatically different from what they normally did.

Q: So you wouldn't say that other guys got more opportunities because Terry was out there?

BB: No I think that certainly helped the passing game. I don't think they changed their coverages per say, but I think it definitely balanced off the defense where they couldn't load up on guy or another. When you put three or four receivers out there and you are only throwing to one or two then eventually a good defense will take those guys away from you and I think that Terry and Troy and David all, whether the necessarily caught the ball or not, at least showed that they could threaten the defense by getting behind them or getting on top of them and I think that is what really helped balance it off for us.

Q: Did they roll someone over on Terry in the second half because he was quiet in the second half?

BB: They played a little bit more two-deep zone, I think that they did make that adjustment, I mean that is something that they have done before is wasn't anything new for them, but they did play a little bit more what we call cover two and load up on the outside guys in the second half and they did do that in the first half, they didn't do it a lot, but enough to keep us off balance.

Q: You have spoken about Brady and how much he has improved, but has he exceeded expectations, especially in these two home games? Do you realistically expect a kid with that lack of experience to play that well?

BB: You never know how they are going to play, but based on the preseason games and the opportunities that he has had, he has been pretty consistent. He misses some throws and he does some things that you would like to see him do a little bit better, but the positives on Tom are he runs the team well, he doesn't make a lot of mistakes like letting the clock run down and missing plays that we have at the line of scrimmage that are checks or like I said throwing the ball to the other…he has never done that so hopefully he won't start now, now that we are giving a little more coaching. Hopefully he can maintain that same presence on the field. Tom just has a game presence that's good and it has been good this year.

Q: Did you start to blitz a lot more than you normally do on Doug [Flutie]?

BB: I don't think so. We certainly wanted to mix it up on Doug and put some pressure on him and a couple of the blitzes that we ran happened to just hit well. Lawyer [Milloy] was able to squirt through there and we had a couple of clean, they came clean on them a couple of times, but I don't think the volume was that high. Romeo [Crennel] made some nice calls and we were just able to hit them at the right time there. Overall I thought that we tried to cover him unfortunately we had a number of defensive interference calls that kept some drives going and then obviously made an error in the coverage in the third quarter where they hit the long play down the sideline, but I don't think it was an excessive amount of blitzing

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