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New England Patriots Postgame Quotes 9/20

HEAD COACH BILL BELICHICK

Postgame Press Conference
Sunday, September 20, 2020

Opening comments…

We'll start off with congratulating Seattle. It was a heck of a football game. They obviously played a little bit better than we did and deserved to win. They have a good football team. They have a great quarterback. I'm glad that we only have to play him once every four years. I think he's a tremendous player. They have a lot of good players. In the end, we just came up a little bit short and I'm proud of the way that our guys competed here. We just didn't quite have enough.

On what he saw from Cam Newton and the attempted comeback at the end…

I thought Cam competed hard. We scored, covered the kick off, got the ball back and got it to the one yard line. Seattle made a good play. I'll give them credit, they deserve the win.

On how he would assess the offensive line today…

We competed hard, we did a lot of things well, we just came up a little bit short. There were good things in the game, but we just weren't good enough. Seattle was a little bit better. They deserve credit for that.

On his thoughts on James White after his father's car accident…

Of course our hearts go out to him.

On the decision making on the final play at the goal line…

It was about what you would think it would be. We had one play to score and we tried to go with what we thought was our best play. What else is there to think about.

On if execution was lacking on the final play…

No, I said at the beginning that I think Seattle made a good play. I think I said that at the beginning of this.

On if the plays that Russell Wilson made were the difference in the game…

Russell Wilson is a great player. He does everything well. He's extremely hard to defend and he hurt us tonight in pretty much every way possible. He's very difficult to handle. They have some very good weapons with him that he can use - the running game, [Duane] Brown on the offensive line, they got the ball outside. He made three great throws on the three long touchdowns. Two of which were very well defended, the other one wasn't bad, he had a guy right in his face and he still made a great throw. You just have to give him credit. He definitely stressed us a lot with his scrambles and his long balls, his accuracies on the zones. He just did everything well. He's very, very hard to defend.

On if N'Keal Harry took a step forward on his toughness tonight…

I think N'Keal is a tough guy. I think our team took a big step in terms of just the competition and the way we battled and competed against Seattle. I was just disappointed that we came up short but the competitive level is high, we just have to coach better, play better and get things a little bit different, a little bit better to win a game like this instead of coming up a yard short. I think our team stepped up collectively as a team and competed again right down to the end, to the last four minutes of the game. The offensive drive, the kick off coverage, the defensive stop, the offensive drive again. We did a lot of things right there. And unfortunately it just wasn't quite enough.

On Cam Newton's composure while trailing by a couple of scores…

I thought that our team competed hard throughout the game. Cam, the entire offense, the coaching staff, the defense. They made plays against us. We made some plays against them. The game went back and forth. It was a multitude of battles within the game. They won some and we won some. I thought we competed right from the opening kick off to the final whistle. We just came up a little bit short and it's the same thing that happened in 2016.

QUARTERBACK CAM NEWTON

Postgame Press Conference
Sunday, September 20, 2020

On how the final play unfolded from his point of view…

It was a great play by them. That's a play that we had favored in the game and we ran it a couple of times. We figured that we went to the well one too many times, but at the end of the day, I still feel confident about it. We just have to execute. And I could have bounced it. I was looking at the clip. I just have to do better. I just have to do better here at the end. We put ourselves in a position to win and when you do that, you just have to finish and we didn't do that today.

On what he thought about the team's fight throughout the game and when they were down multiple scores in the fourth quarter…

It was something to build on, most definitely. I feel as if, put in that situation, I have to do better. It's just simple. There were two different plays that I wish I had back, including that last one. Just execution on my part. All in all, as a team, we fought. We knew what type of game it was going to be. I would say [it] was a hostile environment, I would still consider it a hostile environment with them being so comfortable in their home stadium. But through it all, you just have to battle adversity and [even with] that double digit lead in the fourth quarter, we had our opportunities.

On N'Keal Harry and his trust in him on the final drive…

[N'Keal] has grown in front of everyone's eyes. For him to gain confidence in himself, I think that's a start. And I think that's what he's doing. I think today's game was a great indication of that and what he could potentially be. Yet through it all, he still has to keep building to become the best version of himself.

On why the running backs struggled today after averaging less than two yards per carry…

When they take that away, you have to find different ways to move the football. They watched film and probably saw us last week have a lot of success in the run game and they had a plan. Make no mistake about it, the Seattle Seahawks are a great football team. We are a great football team as well. It was great for us to be able to see where we can kind of figure it out and we just fell short.

On how he feels throwing the football so far this season...

It's early. I'm just trying to continually get better. That's all. For those guys to have faith in me, I just have to deliver.

On if he's able to marry his head and his feet in terms of his mechanics as he gets more comfortable with the offense…

Yeah, it's a day to day process from me trusting in them and [the coaches] keep coaching me up. I have to accept whatever's given to me because I know it goes to better what intuition for myself as well as the team.

On the missed connection with Julian Edelman at the end of the game…

It was a mix of focus and fundamentals. He popped quick and I wish I had that one back, along with the last play at the end and the interception. No need to regret the type of play, we just have to keep getting better. It's early in the season. We knew those guys were who we thought they were. In some ways, a little better. In some ways, a little worse. But that's a great football team that we just played. We just have to keep building from what we put out today. We just have to get better for the next opponent.

On if he sensed Seattle had a beat on the final play…

No I just didn't make everyone right. That's the only thing I regret. In that type of situation, it's humbling to be able to have the respect of the team to have the ball in my hands. I just have to deliver. I saw a clip of it and I could have made it right just by bouncing it. I was trying to be patient and thinking too much. Or I could have dove over the top. There's so many things that flash through me and [when] you're playing a fast defense like that, as soon as you guess, you're wrong. I definitely learned from this. The play was there, the play had been there all game. Moving forward, we just have to scheme up things and being put in that situation again, hopefully we can have a better outcome.

RUNNING BACK REX BURKHEAD

On what to take away from this game…

"We try to go out there and play to the best of our abilities and we fought our tails off. We had a couple good drives to get us there at the end, and Cam (Newton) lead us down the field. Some big catches by Jules (Edelman), N'Keal (Harry)... Just came up short there."

On what he anticipated in the game plan and how much they would go to the passing game…

"You never know how a game is going to pan out. That's what we ended up having to go to and I thought we did great job at times. Of course there are a ton of things we can improve upon, but I think this team showed a lot tonight, showed a lot of character and we are looking forward to the challenges ahead."

FULLBACK JAKOB JOHNSON

On if he can take any solace in the close loss to a great team on the road…

"I can only speak for me, personally - a loss is a loss. There will be a lot of stuff to get better from on this film. That's what I'll focus on, and then on to the next game."

On the historic meaning of being just the second player from Germany to score an NFL touchdown…

"I did not know that, but that's awesome. I'm sure later on that will sink in, but I'll watch the film and figure this game out first."

WIDE RECEIVER MATTHEW SLATER

On finding out about James White's family ahead of the game…

"It's tough. It's hard to put into words. We all have mothers and fathers and to lose your mother or father is something that's never easy. For a tragedy like that to hit the way that it did, it hit us all and we are playing with heavy hearts. It puts things in perspective. Football is a job for us. This is what we do to provide for ourselves and our families. There are things in life that are so much bigger than this game and I think today was a reminder of that. Life is such a fragile thing. I think often times you just assume that you're going to wake up and go about your day and return home safely at the end of the day, but life doesn't happen like that. For our brother to lose his father and parents to be in an accident like that, I think it hit us all in the heart. I don't think we've processed it yet. I don't think I have the words to accurately describe how I feel or how guys are feeling."

On what James White means to this team…

"There are very few that have the character that James has. He's just a wonderful human being. He's so consistent in what he stands for and how he carries himself. I think you can attribute that to the way he was raised, how his mother and father raised him. He's such a breath of fresh air. He's a quiet gentleman, he's a humble person who just loves being around his team. He serves us in so many ways and we're so thankful and fortunate to have a guy like that. He's a tremendous example for guys young and old. I look at James White and say to myself, 'that's a guy that's doing it the right way', so he mean's a great deal to our team."

SAFETY DEVIN MCCOURTY

On his interception for touchdown…

"We talked about a lot of Wilson's interceptions are really not bad decisions, a tipped ball or something like that. We knew that defensively we had to be very opportunistic because we aren't going to get many chances. You saw that throughout the game, he just makes good decisions. He doesn't try to force the ball and hold it and try to make a play with his legs. We just tried to take advantage of any opportunity we got."

On what he learned about Cam Newton as a Patriot tonight…

"I think his resumes speaks for itself. I think the best part is we just started to gel. I think we knew him and what he could do, just like he knew from playing us over the years that we've got competitors out there. We have to stick together and just keep working. We're on the right path, we're doing the right things, just fell short today."

On what he saw between Gilmore and Metcalf…

"There was a lot of extra nonsense honestly with all the after the whistle stuff. Guy (Metcalf) is a good player, Steph (Gilmore) is obviously one of the best players in this league, so just competition. One deep ball where Steph is in good coverage and he comes down with a really good catch and other than that those guys were just competing out there."

On what they can take from their big stop at the end to give their offense chance to win…

"That's the NFL. It's not always going to go the way you want. You never want to play a game and give up 35 points, but it happens. You have to stay in the moment and it came down to what we call four minute situation where you have to go out and get a stop. (Jonathan) Jones plays good coverage on a deep ball and that's what it comes down to defensively. Even when it doesn't go your way as a team, you get an opportunity to try to win the football game. We got off the field, offense got the ball and we got all the way down to the one-yard line and just fell short. I think we all understand the situational football, what we needed to do, all that stuff went well, we just didn't make the one play and that's what the game came down to."

CORNERBACK STEPHON GILMORE

On what precipitated the scrap on the sidelines…

"Just two players competing. I felt like he was blocking me after the whistle. Just trying to keep my poise. Playing very physical between the lines and sometimes that's what goes on."

On the big play for a touchdown against him…

"It happens. I think I was in good position. Russell Wilson threw a good ball. You have to keep fighting. I kept my leverage but he threw a good ball where I couldn't get it, so hats off to him."

On going up against Metcalf…

"Russell Wilson is a great quarterback. He bought a lot of time and that's what helped those guys out. He threw some great balls tonight. You just have to keep getting better, watch the film and keep competing."

On watching the last drive from his offense…

"I thought they were going to push it in. It was two great teams competing against each other. It came down to the one yard and they were able to make a play, so hats off to them."

WIDE RECEIVER JULIAN EDELMAN

On what to take away from tonight's performance…

"You tip your hat to Seattle. They are a very good football team. But, you also have to look at the men in the locker room. We learned a lot tonight from these guys. When you're down two scores with four minutes to go across the country against a really good football team and come back. We knew it was going to come down to the last play. We kept on saying that this whole week and it literally came to the last play. They got us, but we are proud of how we fought as a team."

On his final attempt to catch the ball in the end zone at the end of the game…

"It got on me quick and I didn't make the play."

On going up against Jamal Adams…

"He's a heck of a football player. He plays the game hard. Nothing but respect for him. They got banged up, so I don't know if they planned necessarily for that. He made a bunch of plays, I made a couple plays, I mean it was going back and forth but they made more plays than us."

On what he thought about N'Keal Harry tonight…

"He definitely showed a lot of toughness. He made a lot of plays out there and we are going to need that from him. He showed that he can go out and make plays consistently. Tough plays, hard plays – took some bang-bang shots. I am so proud of him for going out and playing like that. We've all wanted him to come out and play and he's been getting better and better each week. That was a great performance on him. I don't know what the future will tell. If he keeps on working, I think he's going to be a really good football player, just got to keep on working. He's grown up a lot this year I feel becoming a professional, owning, getting his work in, playing multiple positions. He's doing well in the run game, doing well in the pass game. I am very proud of him and the way he played."

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