Patriots wide receivers coach Chad O'Shea addresses the media during his conference call, on Tuesday, December 21, 2010.
Q: I'm curious about your thoughts on Deion Branch and his performance since joining the team?
CO: Deion has done a great job for us. He's brought a lot of professionalism. He's brought work ethic. He's brought leadership to our wide receiver group. He's executed on game day and he's worked extremely hard to do so every week.
Q: It seemed like the Packers did some things to take Deion Branch out of the game - getting physical maybe more than he has seen. Is that what you saw them doing and is that maybe a challenge for him?
CO: Every week I think there are different challenges that you have. One of which for us is, regardless of who we play, it's our job to go out there and execute within our game plan, execute within the role that we're asked. And different defensive backs play different styles. We have to be prepared for all styles, which I think we do during the week. They are definitely aware that they have to go out there on game day and just execute.
Q: What specifically did the Packers' defensive backs do?
CO: Right now we're moving on. It's more important for us right now to know how the Buffalo Bills are going to play us. And that's where our focus is right now: on the Buffalo Bills. We've already moved on from the Packers game. We've evaluated that with our players. We've corrected the things that we need to correct and we've moved on. We're moving on to the Buffalo Bills.
Q: In looking at Wes Welker, does he look like a guy who would have had the offseason that he had in terms of the surgery and everything he did to get back on the field? Does he look like the guy that you've always know and seen? How does he look at this point in the season?
CO: Wes has done a great job. He's worked extremely hard to get to where he is right now, with the injury in the offseason. It's not something we even mention any more. It's not a factor. Wes Welker is Wes Welker right now. He's playing at a high level. There are some things that he knows he needs to improve on, just like all our players right now need to improve on [something]. I'm excited that Wes Welker is on our team and I'm excited he's had a chance to be with us the entire year.
Q: How would you assess the season Julian Edelman has had as a receiver? He seems to be struggling a little bit catching the ball.
CO: I think that when you look at where we are this season with all our players, there are specific things that we all need to work on right now, whether it was in the previous game or whether it was in the last several weeks of the season. There are things we all need to improve on, both as players and coaches, and that's what we're striving to do every day: just go out there and get better and work on those things which we need to improve on.
Q: What specifically is Julian trying to work on?
CO: Julian has had some drops during his last couple times out. I know he is going to work real hard to try to correct that and, specifically, catch the ball, which I know he will work hard to do.
Q: Is it a concentration or focus issue? Have you picked up on anything like that in terms of what's happening with him?
CO: We always say here - and Coach Belichick is the first to say it - that our job as receivers is to get open and catch the ball. However we do that, we need to catch the ball. Regardless of what the reason is that we drop it, we need to go out there and correct the mistakes. Julian will work hard to do so, just as all our receivers will work hard to catch the ball and get open every week.
Q: I know you did some in camp, but do you still work with Aaron Hernandez at all in your position group and if so, what strides have you seen him make throughout the year?
CO: I think with all our young players - regardless of it's Aaron Hernandez - that we have on the Patriots, I've seen improvement in all of them. We tell our players everything is a work in progress. Aaron has made a lot of improvement. I don't work with Aaron because he is a tight end right now and I work with the wide receivers, but he has made a lot of improvement, just as all our players have right now.
Q: Specific to Sunday's game, what coverage do you see the Bills playing predominately?
CO: Just as everybody does, I think we have to be ready for a variety of things. We go through our normal scouting process during the week on the previous games that we've seen and we also try to anticipate how they will play us. We look at our last game. We look at every game. We anticipate everything that they could do and we try to have a plan for everything.
Q: What have you seen from Taylor Price behind the scenes and what is he doing to get better?
CO: Behind the scenes, Taylor is working extremely hard right now. He's doing what we ask him to do which is go to practice and try to get better every day. That's what he's done. He's got some great receivers, in my opinion, in front of him that he can learn from and if he does so, he'll continue to progress. All that we ask of him is to keep working hard and I think he has worked hard.