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New England Patriots Postgame Quotes 9/11

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and select players comment on their 7-20 loss to the Miami Dolphins on Sunday, September 11, 2022.

HEAD COACH BILL BELICHICK

Postgame Press Conference
Sunday, September 11, 2022

BB: Well, it's obviously a disappointing start here. It was really a pretty even game. Two big plays, 14 points, really skewed the game.

Moved the ball. We couldn't get enough points, and we got into their territory. We got in their six, seven times, whatever it was, and it was 7 points. So we've got to do a better job of finishing.

Defensively, gave up a big play there at the end of the half and a couple field goals, but still need to play better on third down. Obviously getting the ball back there at the end of the game.

Not enough good things to win. A couple bad plays really hurt us. Need to finish some drives better on both sides of the ball and make an impact. Just build on this and go back to work.

Q: The strip sack, could you see that? Other than obviously the guy didn't block...

BB: Yeah, we missed him.

Q: Is Mac hurt?

BB: I haven't been in the training room.

Q: How do you feel the new look offense performed in their first real test today?

BB: I think I just said that. Moved the ball. Had a couple of plus-50 punts, but we generally moved the ball but didn't produce enough points.

Q: It didn't look like Kendrick Bourne got in the game until the very end. Was there a reason that he wasn't playing?

BB: No, it just worked out that way.

Q: He came in and immediately caught a 40-yard pass. In retrospect, should you have played him more today?

BB: We did what we thought was best.

Q: Was it disciplinary?

BB: No.

Q: You just told us that he's not giving the coaching staff what they need to see. What do you need to see from him to get in the game more?

BB: We talk to all the players. We just all need to do a better job, obviously, coaches, players. We just all need to perform better. So we'll work on that.

Q: Some of the free rushers on the snap, was that a communication issue? What was wrong?

BB: We had two plays where we had enough to block them, but we didn't block it properly. Yeah, there were two of those.

Q: In retrospect, are you glad you brought the team down early for the heat?

BB: Yeah, there was no problem. We had a good week.

Q: Is it a challenge for you to make sure the guys don't get down on themselves after one loss?

BB: It's a long season. I don't think it will be decided after this week's games.

Q: Overall, what would you just say about Mac at times? Was it on him not finishing the drives or everybody else? What would you say about his performance today?

BB: There weren't a lot of incomplete passes.

Q: A lot of changes along the offensive line. Cole came out early. Isaiah Wynn goes. Was it pre-planned?

BB: Yeah, we planned to play as many people as we could. I think we played just about everybody.

CENTER DAVID ANDREWS

Postgame Press Conference
Sunday, September 11, 2022

DA: We'll go back and watch it here on the flight. We beat ourselves up. I thought we ran the ball well. Obviously, they did some things to counteract that, but some of the pressures, but I thought we ran the ball well, but we beat ourselves. Three, four turnovers, a strip sack for a touchdown. More of can't win till you keep from losing kind of day then, anything else.

I think there was a lot of positives. Parts of me are encouraged. Parts of me are -- you know, let one slip away.

Q: There were two unblocked sacks in the first half that kind of wrecked the drives. Disappointing?

DA: Yes.

Q: Do you need to have that figured out?

DA: Yeah, I don't think I can go into a game not feeling like I have something figured out. Go back and see what we can do better, what I can do better, and go from there.

Q: How did you do as a new offense?

DA: Like I said, there were some things that were encouraging. Look, obviously, when you get down like you do, it kind of takes your fastball away, the run game obviously. We tried to keep it going there. But you can't sit there and just keep running the row ball. Obviously, I haven't looked at the stats, I don't know anything, but I felt like we were moving the ball in the run game. I felt like we were moving the ball all day really. Felt like we could have finished drives and obviously the turnovers, which I hit on.

Like I said, there were some things that are encouraging, but it was a loss. We've got to figure that out here tonight and tomorrow morning and then get on to the next one.Q: Outside of those first two drives in the first and second half, why do you feel the offense struggled?

DA: Well, a strip sack for a fumble. Another interception and fumble, turnovers. It's hard to get in rhythm when you don't have the football.

I think when we were rolling, we were in the rhythm, and then we kind of sputtered out, didn't win first down, got behind the chains. It's hard to win that way.Q: Any worry about there still being a little bit of a going out process?

DA: Look, Super Bowl is not decided today, right? We've got 17 -- 16 more games now. So, look, how many years you come out here and see a team go 8-0, 6-0, and then don't make the playoffs? We try to get better each week. We'll learn from this. I thought it was a great learning experience, just a great defense. I think we all know that, who does some challenging things. We'll learn from it and move forward. That's all we can do.

Q: Do you feel like you were acclimated to the heat, coming down early?

DA: Yeah, it was just playing football, man.

Q: When you say learning, what did you learn most from today?

DA: Like I said, I thought we did a lot of things good. We made some plays. We were able to run the ball well. I thought Cole did a great job in his first NFL start.

Look, I got to go in the film and learn. Come find me next week, and you can find an analysis of it.

LINEBACKER MATTHEW JUDON

Postgame Press Conference
Sunday, September 11, 2022

Q: How would you sum up the game?

MJ: We're going to go back on and film and see what we did, but it's the score obviously. They have more points than we did. We've got to fix that and come out on the victor's side next time.

Q: How much did that play at the end of the first half, their touchdown on fourth down, how much did that

knock you guys back?

MJ: I think all the points knocked us back. That's how you win games. You score more points than they did. A.J. is kind of hurt, and it's fourth down. We know they've got to pass it, fourth and long, and we give up six going into the half, and then they get the ball back. So that hurt us. It definitely stings, and we can't do that if we want to be a good team.

Q: Do you kind of feel like you guys were a work in progress? Is it always that way, or what Devin was talking about, how do you fix those kinds of things?

MJ: I think everybody is a work in progress until the end. It ain't over until it's over. We're not tucking, and we're not ducking on smoke. We're going to go back out there and work. We've just got to work harder, honestly. We want to win games. We want to be a good football team. We want to have a chance to compete. So with that, a work in progress. It ain't over till it's over. We've got 16 more of these, and we're not going to hang our hat on the first one.

SAFETY DEVIN MCCOURTY

Postgame Press Conference
Sunday, September 11, 2022

Q: How would you sum up that game?

DM: Too many bad plays. I didn't look at the stats, but it wasn't a game where we just got completely dominated, but you can't win in this league with bad plays. We just had too many bad plays, defensively specifically.

But even overall, turnovers, bad plays, defense missing tackles, things like that, it's too hard to win in this league. Almost gave ourselves a chance, and then another bad play. It's just too much to overcome.

Q: What would you say, just describe your perception of that play before the half? Did that feel like a bad play at the time or no?

DM: I couldn't fully see it. I was in coverage. Lester ran a wheel route, so I was in coverage. Definitely, what was it, 10-0 and you give up that play, even if we just make the tackle, we go 13-0 into the half is way better, I think, than giving up the touchdown and coming back out on defense. I thought we did a good job to come back in the second half after giving up that play the first drive to get a three and out and get our offense back on the field. Again, it's just too much to overcome.

I think within the game, like that play, I was sitting there like, man, we lost now, but it definitely, when you have a play like that where it's just like -- I don't want to say easy, but a play where they make a good throw and catch and just tackle him right here, it definitely, I think it hurt us, but it didn't knock us out of the game.

We still had a whole half of football, and we got momentum, we got going, but then again, like another missed tackle here or there, turnover, just couldn't overcome it.

Q: Did you think they might punt there? He goes out.

DM: I didn't. The offense never left the field. Obviously A.P. gets hurt, so they had more time to think about it, but I would say overall, if I remember correctly, I told the guys we need to get a stop, and I think someone said to me, it's fourth down. The offense didn't leave the field. They stayed out there.

So whether they were going to go or not, it definitely looked like they were thinking about it, and I think we saw that. Even at the end of the game, the reverse, they were still throwing the ball. Obviously an aggressive mentality, and we've got to match that as a defense.

Q: Are you encouraged at all? 13 points, and they only had one big play.

DM: Hard, man. I'm not going to lie to you. Like I said, there's some good things on the film. I'm sure we'll see that.

But you want to win, man. I think you understand how this league works. It's a result league, win or loss. There's no like we did this well, good momentum. Yeah, there's some things we'll look at and say, I don't think this team is going to say, hey, we're destined to go 0-17. We have some good players. We had good plays today.

But in this league, you've got to change that fast and get it going, play better and get a win next week. That's what it's about.

Q: How deceptive is Tua? It seems like he hides the ball really well.

DM: I would say overall like that offense, we knew that, when we played San Fran, it's just a lot of movement within the backfield. When you've got the quarterback kind of hand down in front, did he give it, did he keep it, I think they do a good job of that.

We did a good job on some plays just getting pressure and making them decide and having them react quickly. No, he does a great job with that, and I would say does a good job of just taking what the defense gives him.

They've got a lot of guys, I think we saw today, that they're going to just throw it to and say do the rest. We've got to do a better job, no matter who we play, of tackling because guys are talented in this league.

I think there were some plays on third down and different times where he threw the ball short, but a broken tackle turned it into a big play and I think kind of changed drives. Instead of being ready to get off the field on a minus 50, they get a first down, either in field goal range now or the punt knocks us back to within the 5 yard line. I think some of those plays made it tougher for us too as a defense and as an offense.

Q: It seemed like no matter what you guys tried, it's getting really hard to come out of here with a win?

DM: Frustrating. That's what I said. Are you encouraged? Yeah, I mean, but we just -- what is this, four straight losses? I think that's definitely frustrating because we've got a team that I think can compete and come out here and win, but we keep falling short. It sucks to come in here and have to keep saying that.

Q: Going to clean up the mistakes?

DM: I sure hope so. We're going to go to work and get it fixed. Week 1, we've got a lot of time, but have to have a sense of urgency.

Obviously going on the road next week in Pittsburgh won't be any easier, but it will be a great challenge to see what we're made of and go out there and try to get a win against a good football team.

PLAYERS IN THE LOCKER ROOM

TE Hunter Henry

(I understand it's only Week 1. You said you're going to learn from it, but what do you feel you learned about your team?) – "That we have a good football team. I mean, we moved the ball, we just kind of shot ourselves in the foot and made bad mistakes. We can't have a free rusher backed up. We had a pick in the first drive and the momentum probably would have shifted in a little way. We just didn't execute good enough. I felt like we moved the ball well, we just didn't finish drives."

(The rhythm really seemed to be there aside from that first drive in the first half and the first drive in the second half. Why do you feel you really struggled to get some traction offensively?) – "I think it was the turnovers, obviously, and then when you're playing from behind, especially how far we got behind, it changed things. We kind of had to pick it up a little bit more and things had to be a little different. I mean, we moved the ball, we just kind of shot ourselves in the foot like I said."

(Did you see any particular way they were trying to attack your protections when they brought 'DBs'?) – "They brought a different good amount of blitzes today, not an incredible amount and (Cover 0) pressures, all out pressures. They're definitely trying to mix some safety pressures, some backend pressures to try to confuse guys. I felt like we handled a lot of them good, but obviously the one stands out with the strip sack. That one kind of – you got to be on it on every single play."

WR Jakobi Meyers

(I know this is the first game, and like you said there are thing you can build on. Is there a sense of frustration that you could start as an offense a little bit faster?) – "I feel like we started fast; we just didn't finish. So we start fast, and that was something we preached on all week. We just got to finish when we get down to the red zone."

WR DeVante Parker

(QB Mac Jones and maybe some others were saying, "Hey! DPI on that interception down in the corner of the end zone." What did you think happened on that one?) – "I don't know what happened. When the ball was in the air, X (Xavien Howard) was able to get his hand up, and (Jevon) Holland came up with the pick."

(Did you think you had been interfered with?) – "I didn't think I was. He got his hand up and Jevon (Holland) was able to pick it off."

(Was there anything happening there that didn't allow you to kind of get off the ground the way you would have wanted?) – "No, I don't believe so. I just kind of misjudged it, so the next time I know just go up for it."

(How was the heat? Did you feel like it was a factor at all for you guys today?) – "No, I feel like we were in shape. I don't feel like it was a factor at all."

(Does it feel pretty normal to still have some growing pains even in Week 1?) – "Yes, there's some stuff that you can overcome. You just have to go back on film and correct it."

DB Kyle Dugger

(The touchdown they got on that fourth down looked like you were coming down just kind of playing single high. Was it a bad angle? What happened there?) – "Terrible angle by me. Bad eyes. I didn't locate the defender. I didn't do my job basically; really poor play by me. Corners trust in me to be in the middle of the field and I wasn't there. So it was definitely all me – bad play."

(You mentioned bad eyes, I know coaches talk a lot about that pre-snap. Are you talking about as the play developed? Or when was that?) – "I just never located the receiver. Or I didn't put myself in a position to be inside of him once he caught it. So it was just a poor angle, poor placement and too late."

(Besides that play obviously, you guys held them to pretty few point – I think it was 13 on offense. What was driving that success of otherwise keeping them out of the end zone?) – "Stopping the run definitely was one thing that was good. I know it was pretty one dimensional. The d-line did a great job and linebackers did a great job of stopping the run, so it made them one dimensional. Guys be doing their job up front, so that definitely was super helpful for us."

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