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New England Patriots Postgame Quotes 9/29

New England Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick, Quarterback Tom Brady and select players comment on their 16-10 win over the Buffalo Bills on Sunday, September 29, 2019.


Postgame Press Conference
Sunday, September 29, 2019

Opening statement: Great team effort by our guys, really proud of our players. They stepped up, showed a lot of mental and physical toughness in this game. Obviously the Bills are a good football team, played very well, they have a lot of great players, well coached, tough. Our guys just started making more plays, and really competed for 60 minutes. We knew that's what it's going to take here, and they really responded to that. It's good to get a division win on the road, and I'm really happy for our team, I'm really proud of the way they competed here. This was a tough football game, tough place to play.

Q: What did you think of Jaime Collins continuing his great play today, just the ability to not only create turnovers, but also spy Josh Allen?

A: Defensively it's good. We had good team defense. I'm sure Jaime had a lot of great plays. I can't see everybody out there, but he had a lot of great plays. It didn't look like that ball was ever going to come down on the last interception, he almost fair caught it, and made the play. But, Jaime's been doing a great job for us all year. With [Dont'a Hightower] out today, he took over the signal calling responsibilities. So, just whatever we've asked him to, he's done a great job with it.

Q: You faced a great defense today, how much of the problems moving the ball was the blocking? Your blocking against Buffalo's defense?

A: We know they have a great defense. They're well coached, they're strong in all three areas, defensive line, linebackers, and secondary. They do a great job with their disguise, and are a tough, physical football team. Yea, they do a good job. They made it hard on us, like they always do.

Q: On the blocked punt, J.C. [Jackson] was mentioning that was something you guys had worked on all week. What leads you to call it? Obviously, thinking it's going to work, but what led you to call it at that point?

A: Yea, it was a great call by Joe [Judge] and Cam [Achord]. We talked about it before the game. We had good field position, they're backed up, and they didn't bring the gunners back in, so we just brought them off the edge. I think they started bringing them back in after that.

Q: With all the special teams in the game? That play obviously but others, what are your thoughts on that?

A: It was a big field position game and there were some turnovers in there that obviously impacted the field position but obviously [Andre] Roberts is top returner in the league. He does a great job so I thought our coverage teams are really challenged by him on both kickoff and punt coverage. He had a couple good runs on us. We had some good coverage on him but Jake [Jake Bailey] punted the ball well and made it tough on them near the sideline, gave us good hang time. They gave us good- Slater, Brooks, Bolden. Those guys covered well, but that's tough, he's tough and they're good in the kicking game and everybody's trying to battle their one-on-one matchups and still get to the best returner in the league, one of the best anyway.

Q: Do you think their defense did some adjusting with Barkley at the end of the game? He's obviously a much different quarterback than Allen.

A: Yeah, it's different. The offense really was the same on what they game planned for, they continued to do. Maybe a couple of adjustments but I think the players handled it well. They were on top of it and we kind of know what adjustments we need to make and basically on the pass rush.

Q: How would you describe the last play today on how we had to rewind on the quarterback when he intercepted?

A: We had blitz a couple plays earlier and I'm not really sure what happened on the protection, whether it was a hot throw or whether they thought that somebody was coming that didn't come, I don't know, you'll have to ask them but that's how it probably- it was a disguise and having everybody up there and like I said, we had blitz on the first and second down so this time, we backed out of it and I don't know, they might have made a mistake in protection or something.

Q: Matthew Slater has done a lot of things over his career that don't get a lot of attention. Is it nice, as long as it happened in a win, to see him get a touchdown?

A: Yeah, it's always good when you score a touchdown, okay. I don't care who scores. Nobody works harder than Matt at his craft, and some great, great play by our special teams unit, they take so much pride in what they do. Joe and Cam do a great job with the play design, and the execution. Got a good jump on the ball, and J.C. [Jackson] made a great play, and Slater turned it into points. So, yea, I was ecstatic that we scored. I'm always happy when we score.

Q: Are you worried about [Stephen] Gostkowski, and do you think it's time to bring someone in to at least push him a little bit?

A: Well, I think we're all going to look back on this game and say 'there are some things we can improve on.' Certainly I know I feel that way. We have a hard working team, I have a lot of confidence in our team. We'll just keep working hard to do things better, and do them better next week.


Postgame Press Conference
Sunday, September 29, 2019

Opening remarks: It's a great win. The defense played phenomenal, both defenses really well. Our defense just did a great job there at the end, and we just have to get back to work.

Q: Do you feel with your receivers banged up in some, you know, changing pieces on that offensive line, do you feel shorthanded right now, when you're out there?

A: I think we're all just trying to improve? We did the best we can do and today was, you know, we can do better than that. So, try to do better next week, figure out all the things that they did well. They did a lot of things well, and I'm glad we won. Glad we're 4-0.

Q: You could've gone up 20-0, and you're first and goal on the two, three yard line, and it looks like he's open and then the corner peels off. Can you talk about that play?

A: Yeah, he made a really good play, and I just can't let that happen. Just be smarter. You know, that's - they do actually make a lot of those types of plays. This defense, they're just, they have some secondary players that intercept the ball. And you know, you're a little careless and you think you got someone, and windows close pretty quick. You know, Julian [Edelman] beat his guy, and then he fell off and made a good play, and that was a bad play by me, so can't afford to give away points like that, but our defense made up for it.

Q: During the week, you talked about how the Bills defense makes you earn everything. Today, consistently, you guys really had poor starting field position, how much that really challenge things?

A: You know, I don't think field position to me, doesn't matter that much. Wherever we start, we start. We still have to move the ball for points. So, we just didn't do a very good job, I would say, of consistently doing the right thing against a really good defense, that certainly plays well at home, but it's good to win. Whether we win 45-40, or 45-3 or whatever it was, say 16-10, they all count the same. We just have to figure out how to do a better job on offense. Defense, I know they're going to play great. They're playing great all season long, and try to score more points than we did today.

Q: Would you describe yourself as kind of feeling under pressure today? Is that a fair description more so than maybe the first three games of the year?

A: I don't think we did. You know, in any area of the game. Offensively, we struggled. They force a lot of teams to struggle, and if we're going to score more points, then we have to do a lot better job than we did today. We didn't, so that's just the way it goes.

Q: How did you feel seeing Matthew Slater's touchdown? The first one of his career.

A: It was great. I was hoping to throw him one at some point. He might have had a shot in 11, on a post that he kind of fell down as he caught it, but it was great seeing him getting into the end zone. He'll get to keep that ball.

Q: He's on defense, J.C. Jackson, but he blocks a punts, makes two interceptions, one on the sidelines, and, you know, probably just keep playing winning game. You see him every day, what have you seen about his development?

A: Just does a great job. He does play scout team a lot, so we actually go against him a lot. Very talented. Just very, very skilled. And he's obviously got great ball skills, as well. Fast, quick, you know, can't make a mistake around him. So it's hard to make a mistake against our defense. They're playing really great football.

Q: Tom, I have to ask you on a day like today where the office does struggle. Is there any part of you that says, man, I wish we had Antonio Brown today?

A: I mean, those types of things are, you know, I just have to go out there and do the best job I can do, and I've been trying to do that for 20 years now. So it's what I'll try to do next week, it's what I tried to do this week, try to the week before, and hopefully score more points.

Q: Is this just about what you expected defensively?

A: Yeah, they're really good. They got a good defense. They're going to be in a lot of games. They're 3-0 for a reason, so to go on the road and beat a team that's 3-0, is pretty good. We can certainly play better than we did. We have to get in the red area, we had some missed opportunities there, but we'll go out and try to do a better job next week.


Postgame Press Conference
Sunday, September 29, 2019

Transcript to follow


Postgame Press Conference
Sunday, September 29, 2019

Q: Let's get back to the blocked punt if you would?

A: Just preparing on it. Just preparing on it all week, you know what I'm saying? We were working on it in practice, and Coach called and I executed the right way.

Q: You are usually on the outside there?

A: Yes, sir.

Q: And the call was to come in and rush?

A: Yes, sir. We worked that all week in practice.

Q: Can you take us through the interceptions?

A: Just going out there and competing and finishing plays man. We just knew what this game was going to be about. We had to finish, compete and that's really about it.

Q: You had two interceptions and one blocked punt that was returned for a touchdown.

A: That's my first time doing it.

Q: The interception by the sideline it looked like it was a pretty tough play to make. How did you make it?

A: Just going out there and just making plays. Just believing and trusting in my technique, my fundamentals that I worked in practice and just going out there competing and executing.

Q: What did you see on that play? You were in the middle and came over on the second one [interception].

A: So, the receiver, he ran a go route. Then Josh Allen got out of the pocket and started scrambling, then receiver tried to come back to the ball and I guess I just competed and got the ball before he did.

Q: Where were you when you read where he started breaking where were you?

A: I was looking back at him and once I seen the ball in the air I just said it's mine and went up and got it.

Q: J.C., obviously you want to do your best on team defense every game but when you see what Buffalo is doing on defense knowing they are keeping it a low scoring does that increase the focus and increase the intensity on your defense?

A: Oh yeah of course man. We talked about it all week what type of game it was going to be. Defense we had to just to go out there and make plays.

Q: Is it satisfying for your football team to show you can win in a bunch of different ways?

A: Oh yeah of course man. Especially to win on the road in a hostile environment. It's just we have a lot of work to do, but we are improving defensively.

Q: What goes through your mind when you see Jamie [Collins Sr.] catch that last one and to know it sealed it?

A: I mean that's the best way to finish a football game. It doesn't get any better than that.

Q: Going back to last year when you guys were rolling the dice going after people forcing blitz cover one cover zero it seems like you guys have worked out this year. Do you guys get excited when it gets called out there? Not to put you out there on an island, but let's go get people?

A: Yeah, of course man. Knowing we got a lot of guys in the defense who make plays, who can blitz, who can rush the passer, great guys in the secondary and we just get amped up and fired up.


Wide Receiver Phillip Dorsett II

Q: It wasn't a picture perfect game for you guys, but is it easier coming away with the win?

A: We're happy that we got a win, it doesn't matter how we got it. That team is a really good team and they were 3-0 for a reason. They're one of the best defenses in the league for a reason; they played excellent together, all in the right space at the right time and they knew how to play. I give all credit to the Bills.

Q: How important is it to have that resiliency where you need to get the win but you know it's not the best game you've played?

A: It was definitely good, we were in a dog fight. Not all these games are going to be blowouts in the NFL and we know that. We were in a dog fight, we were resilient and we were able to pull it out.

Q: Why was it hard to get in a rhythm today?

A: Their defense was good. Sometimes you just have to give it up to the defense.

Q: Does a performance like today make you concerned about the offense moving forward?

A: No, we're good. We'll be alright. It's football and we know not everything's going to be perfect but we know we still have to fix a lot of things. Right now it's just about getting better and we got the win which is a step in the right direction. As an offense though, we know we have to be better -- we know that. Everybody knows that. Right now I'm just going to celebrate this win.

Cornerback Stephon Gilmore

Q: What worked for you guys against Josh Allen?

A: Everybody just had to do their job. We had play-calls that we planned on calling and we just trusted everybody. Trusted the defensive line to get there, tried to make him make some tough throws and we were able to come out with the win.

Q: Did you figure that you'd have a chance to make some plays in the secondary given that he [Josh Allen] can be aggressive with the ball?

A: Yeah, he's going to try and throw it in there. He's got good legs, he can run around. He tried to throw it in there on some scramble balls and we just had to play tight coverage. We knew he was going to make some plays.

Q: What was [Matt] Barkley doing differently when he came in?

A: He threw the ball a little quicker. He made his mind up [quickly], so we had to adjust on that. That's just how football goes.

Q: What did you think of J.C.'s [Jackson] big day?

A: He's a baller. He works hard in practice every day, and he's come in every day since last year working hard each and every day. He helped us out a lot today. I'm happy for him.

Q: It was a hard-fought defensive battle, what was it like out there today?

A: We knew it wasn't going to be easy. We knew it was going to come down to the wire against this team, especially at home.

Q: You guys finally gave up a touchdown, huh?

A: Yeah, they're a good football team. You're not going to play perfect.

Wide Receiver Matthew Slater

Q: What are the feelings after finally getting that first touchdown?

A: I'm just thankful to be in the right place at the right time and thank God for the opportunity. It was an awesome experience.

Q: When you see the ball, what goes through your mind?

A: My eyes were huge! You dream of being able to score as a kid. At thirty four years old I'm still a kid, so I can dream.

Q: Does a grinded down game like this remind you of how easy Tom [Brady] makes it look sometimes and that he can also grind a game?

A: Absolutely, he's the ultimate competitor. There's no one in this locker room that has the will to win greater than his. When you get into games like this, you see it on full display; him never quitting, always believing in the guys, pushing us to keep competing. Winning is tough in this league and we were reminded of that today.

Q: J.C. [Jackson] had the block and then he had the two interceptions later in the game, how important was he for you guys to win today?

A: He was huge. He might've been the best player on the field for us today, honestly. I told him on Wednesday that he owed me a pick [interception] and he got two. He's just locked in. He's an instinctive player who's a playmaker, I still don't know how he went undrafted.

Running Back James White

Q: When you see guys struggle a little bit today and guys start to get banged up, are you worried with where the offense is headed right now?

A: No, we'll be fine. We just need to keep working, keep improving and learn from the mistakes that we had today. There's always room for improvement.

Q: What is it in particular about the Bills' defense that makes them a challenge for you guys?

A: They just play sound defense. They're good football players who are well coached and do what they need to do to make you drive the football. We've just got to do a better job on offense as a whole, finding ways to get first downs and converting on third down.

Q: Does it feel like your defense gives the offense more margin for error when they're playing the way they are?

A: You can't always just rely on the defense; we have to go out there and do our job. We have to be better next week and we can learn from our mistakes tomorrow.

Q: What do you think it will take for you guys to get the consistency you want in the run game week-after-week?

A: It's not just one thing; it's good run-reads and everyone just being on the same page. We'll get better and it starts on the practice field.

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