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Replay: Patriots Postgame Show Tue Nov 24 | 12:00 AM - 11:55 AM

Drew Bledsoe Press Conf.

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            **Q: Could you talk a little bit about Buffalo's defense?**  

D: They are very, very solid defensively. They do some things to give you some problems. They changed things up a little bit against the Jets a little bit this last week, but when you watch them on film they are not extremely tough to figure out they just play very well. They are always around the ball. One thing that stands out when you watch Buffalo on film is that they are all very good tacklers. You don't see very many guys breaking tackles against them. You see a lot of times the first guy that gets there brings the ball carrier down. So they are very sound, they make you work very hard to score points against them, they are extremely tough against the running game and they do a good job of getting pressure without extremely exotic blitz schemes.

Q: I know professional athletes play to win one week at a time and have tunnel vision, but is that one of your weaker moments when you think about the second half of the season.

D: I think we are going to continue to approach it as I said after the game against the Colts, we are going to go into each game, try and win each game and I think we are going to be a dangerous team the second half of the season. You are going to see us we are going to win some games, you know these last eight games and it starts this week with Buffalo. We have got to go out and play well at home and try and beat the Bills. I think we are a dangerous team the second half of the season. I think we are going to win some games the second half of the season and as a matter of fact we are going to try to win them all, but that's starts this week against Buffalo.

Q: How would you rate yourself through the first half of the season, do you think you have improved at all in any areas?

D: I think there have been some things that I have done very well. In looking back I think that I have avoided for the most part the negative plays, the turnovers those kind of things when I have been under pressure and that is something I have to continue to improve on. Obviously you look back at some of the individual games and there are plays there that I could have made to change the complexion of the game and until I make all of those I am not going to be satisfied, but there are some things that I have done well and there are some things, some particular throws that I could have hit at different times.

Q: Coach talked about how you kept yourself alive in the pocket more this year than in the past is that something you worked on in the offseason?

D: Well it is something that I focused on a little bit more through training camp and this season trying to not necessarily run more with ball that is not a focus, but I think that one area that I can continue to improve on is my movement within the pocket and making one or two guys miss in the pocket and buying just a little bit more time in order to work the ball down the field. So that is something that I have focused on and it something that will continue to be a focus for me.

Q: Who are you looking at as a model?

D: A guy that obviously was very, very good at that over the years was (Dan) Marino. You watch him and he was obviously not a mobile guy at all, but he was very good in the pocket at making one or two guys miss in the pocket, sliding one way or the other and buying more a little more time to work the ball down the field. I think that would be the model you would look to on that.

Q: What do you make of the quarterback rating in general? Is it something that you look at, do you understand how it is computed, is it something quarterbacks care about?

D: It is something that you look at but I don't think it is necessarily always a gauge of whether or not you are doing your job the right way. There are times when throwing the ball is the right play and that brings that down so it is not something I pay particular attention to, but I guess if you were to pick a statistical way to figure out what a quarterback is doing that's one way to do it, but I don't think it is the end all be all as an evaluation whether or not a quarterback is doing his job.

Q: You played a lot of years with Todd Rucci what are your thoughts on his departure?

D: This is a tough business and it is hard to see a guy like Rucci go. He is a guy, first of all he is a close personal friend of mine and that makes it hard, but also he is a guy that protected me for seven years and did a good job of that. It's a tough one to take because Rucci was a guy that did everything that was asked of him by the organization. In seven and half years I don't know that he ever missed anything or was fined, I think he did everything that was asked of him by the organization. That's a tough one to take.

Q:

D: That is the way we approach it and we look at these games and we have been competitive against good teams. We have been in a lot of games right down the wire and we have been in some situations where one play here or there puts us over the top and gives us a better record. We know that we can be competitive with anybody in the league but what it comes down to is this second half of the season we are going to have to make those plays to score the points or keep the other team off the board when we get into those tight situations at the end. That really has ultimately been our downfall through the first half of the season is that we have had opportunities late in the game, but we haven't made the big play to score the points or made the big play to keep the other team from scoring points to win the game at the end. Every play during the course of the game is big, but we need to make those plays in those situations to continue to win and I have confidence to do that. I have confidence that we will be in all of our games down the stretch and that it comes down to making those plays.

Q: Do you think your friendship with Rucci will take on a different tenor now that he is not a part of the team because a lot of friendships in sports are because guys are on the same team?

D: No Rucci and I came in together and I was the best man at his wedding and we are going to spend a ton of time together during the offseason and so on. So I won't see him everyday, but that is one of the things in this business that you have to be able to do is you have to be able to value those friendships that you make even when the guy moves along. You obviously won't see him as much, but this is one of those…

Q: Eric Bjornson moving to wide receiver how does that change any element of the offense does it add a new dimension at all?

D: Obviously with the results that we have had our staff is looking to try different combinations and different things to see if we can find some places where guys can make plays and be more effective and so those are just two examples of moving some guys around to see what they can do. Eric was a receiver in college, he's got good speed, good hands and is adept at getting open as a receiver. Apparently we are going to try him there a little bit and see how it goes.

Q: Are you surprised that (Doug) Flutie has come back from the dead?

D: No Doug is a great competitor, a very good football player and when he has an opportunity to get on the field he is generally very effective for his team. That's where it is, it has been unfortunate for him, I think it has been a hard situation for him obviously, but when he has his chance to get on the field and help the team he does a very good job.

Q: I am not going to ask you who you are voting for, but do you plan on voting Tuesday?

D: I am a republican all the way. My grandfather was a republican representative in the state of Washington and our family has been republican forever so there you have it, but yes I will be mailing in my vote back to Washington.

Q: Can you talk about the line, Todd is gone but the two guys who have stepped in at guard do you have a lot of confidence in them?

D: Yes I think we are settling things down in the middle there. Sale (Isaia) and Joe (Andruzzi) have done a good job for us up there and I think we are starting to get better and those two guys are playing very well and obviously our staff has great confidence otherwise you don't make a move like they did.

Q: Does Bjornson's size on the outside help as a target?

D: Sure and I think he can be pretty effective in using his size, using his body to shield the defensive back away from the ball. What he lacks in speed as an outside receiver I think he can in some ways make up for with his size by making a guy play through him for the ball.

Q: It is always an event when Flutie comes back here, what is it going to be like on Sunday with the number seven jerseys and all of that?

D: Well it has been the same the last couple of times he has come down it is an exciting thing, he is a guy that is a legend in this area and obviously still has great fans. It would be similar if I went back and played in Washington there would be some people showing up with some Washington State Jerseys. So it's an exciting thing I think for the fans in this area to see Doug again and watch him play I just hope they are going to show up and cheer for us also.

Q: As a quarterback what do you like about Doug?

D: Well obviously we play completely different styles of football. There is really no comparing the way that the two of us play, but Doug is very, very adept at playing his style of ball. He gets outside where he can make plays and buy guys some more time and is very good at throwing the deep ball and giving his guys opportunities to make plays for him and then he can pull it down and run with the best of them. Anytime you can watch a guy play the position in a totally different way it is something that you admire and something that you know you will never be able to do.

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