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Bill O'Brien Conference Call Transcript

Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O'Brien addresses the media during his conference call on Tuesday, September 13, 2011.

Q: If you're without Dan Koppen at center what does the offense lose in a scenario like that?

BO: Well, Dan's a guy that obviously has played a lot of football for us at a very important position. So, that's not something that's an easy thing to adjust to, but I do think that Dan Connolly went in there last night and performed pretty damn well for the situation that he was put into. So, I'm very confident in Dan and what he's going to be able to do for us.

Q: When you're calling plays do you adjust to say a new center or do you basically just do the exact same thing with Dan Connolly in there as when Dan Koppen is in there?

BO: I would say it depends on who it is. With Dan [Connolly] we didn't adjust our game plan at all. We did the same things we've been doing for the whole game, and like I said before, I thought he came in and did a good job. I'll tell you this – the whole line, I thought, played a very solid football game for us and he was definitely part of it.

Q: What did you think of the overall tempo of the offense? It seemed to pick up in the third quarter especially on some of those touchdown drives.

BO: We try to play at a crisp, fast tempo every day. Every week is a new week, the tempo changes sometimes from drive-to-drive, but as a whole we want to play fast we don't want to play slow. So, it's important for me to get the play in quickly and for Tom [Brady] to get the play communicated quickly, and for us to be at the line of scrimmage and ready to go. So, that's part of the philosophy of our offense.

Q: By you guys going no huddle does that prevent them from walking around? Jason Taylor seemed to be walking around right before the snap, does you going no huddle kind of prevent that?

BO: You'd have to ask them that. I know that for us, going fast – I'm sure that we feel like whether they're lined up or not, we're going to run our play. You'd have to ask them if it prevented them from walking around.

Q: On the interception when you went back and watched that, what did you attribute that to? Was it tipping the play off maybe early or good execution on the Dolphins part? Where did that fall apart?

BO: I thought Benny Sapp made a really good play on that and we've got to do a better job of designing the play and executing the play, but overall, I think Benny Sapp made an excellent play on that to tip it in the air and then [Jared] Odrick made a great play making the interception. The one thing I'll say about that play is if you go back and watch it on tape, Deion Branch did an unbelievable job of tracking that guy down. Even though they scored after that, I'm just saying he did a good job of tracking that guy down.

Q: Speaking of Branch, he had a pretty quiet preseason, which led to a lot of questions. What was the difference between what we saw in the preseason to him being his usual self last night?

BO: I'm not sure. I don't pay attention too much to what the media says about the preseason. The preseason is about playing a lot of different groupings and trying out a lot of different schemes and things like that. Some guys like Deion – I don't even know how much he played in the preseason. The preseason is one thing and the regular season is another thing. Deion, like those guys that played for us last night, obviously Wes [Welker],  and the other guys, Julian [Edelman], [Matthew Slater] and Chad [Ochocinco], those are dependable guys for us and it's a week-to-week deal, and we're a game plan offense. Last night, Deion played well, along with those other guys, for us.

Q: From a match-up perspective, how important are your tight ends and their diverse skills in terms of creating some favorable matchups for you, against different teams, but just in general?

BO: They both have different skill sets. Obviously, the best thing about both of these guys is [that] they love to practice; they work really hard at their craft.  I would say too that Dan Gronkowski, Rob [Gronkowski's] brother came in and in a short span of time did a good job of picking up the offense and played decently last night, too. So, they all have different skill sets and again, it's about San Diego this week and it's week-to-week. Whatever happened last night really doesn't matter as it relates to the next game which is San Diego, so we're in the middle of getting ready for that right now.

Q: Along those lines what stands out to you with this Chargers defense?

BO: [They're] a very disciplined defense. They're an aggressive defense. They've got a lot of good players at every position: [Eric] Weddle the safety, Bob Sanders, obviously, [Quentin] Jammer and [Antoine] Cason at the corners – those guys are playing well. Their nickel, Dante Hughes, is a really good player, [he's a] tough, quick, good player. Their front with [Shaun] Phillips and those guys in there – those guys are good players, their linebackers… When they got to their nickel defense and [when] Antwan Barnes is in there rushing they're pretty much… they're an excellent defense that's an aggressive one that's going to be a real challenge for us.

Q: As far as Chad Ochocinco's playing time goes, is that something that was evaluated on a week-to-week basis?

BO: Yeah. I would say, again, that it's week-to-week. Every week it will change and one of the things that's great about the guys here is that they all understand that – that each guy has his role. Maybe his role is going to be a little bit bigger in a certain game than it is in another game, and that will be the same for the [running] backs, receivers and tight ends. So, I just think it's week-to-week and in regards to Chad, I think he's worked hard to improve every week and he has. He played about 20 plays last night and it will be week-to-week just like it is with every position.

Q: If the offense performed at that level for the rest of the season and didn't improve, would that be good enough to win in the NFL on a weekly basis?

BO: Really I just am thinking about San Diego and really, whatever happened last night, I'm telling you; it really doesn't matter as it relates to San Diego. Every week in this league is a different week and hopefully this will be the last time that I'm talking about Miami until the next time we play Miami because what we're focused on now is San Diego and what we have to do to beat those guys. We don't ever think about, 'is that going to be good enough for this or that or the other.' It's what are we going to do this week to try to move the ball and score points against a very, very good San Diego defense.

Q: When you met with the players today after watching the film exactly what did you point out to them that needed improvement offensively from the performance last night? What were the faults?

BO: We got in at 5 a.m. We didn't meet with the players today, so we'll meet with them tomorrow. There's always areas to improve on whether it's turnovers or six penalties, or two minute at the end of the half, or better red area execution, and where you're going to get better there. So, there's a lot of things to improve on in a game and that's what we'll work hard at doing, in addition to first and second downs and getting better at our game plan for San Diego.

Q: Did you not sit or stand on the sidelines last night just like everyone else and say a little bit of a 'wow' based on what your offense was doing?

BO: No. Again, it's not my offense it's the Patriots offense, it's our offense, if it's anybody's offense – its coach [Bill] Belichick's offense, he's the head coach. Again, it's week-to-week, so it's what we're going to do this week in preparation for San Diego – there were things that we were productive with last night, we moved the ball, but there're a lot of things to improve on – a lot of little things. It's a detail oriented game and again, this is the week to really try to improve it because this is a heck of a defense that we're going against on Sunday against San Diego.

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