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Transcript: Bill Belichick Conference Call 10/10

Read the full transcript of Bill Belichick's conference call with the media on Tuesday, October 10, 2017.


October 10, 2017


Q: How would you sum up the contributions David Harris has given you since he first signed here?

BB: David's done everything we've asked him to do. He's worked hard, been a great teammate. Yeah, I couldn't have asked for him to have any better attitude or any more cooperation than we've had from him. He's been great.

Q: Is it just a matter of time until we see a little bit more of him on the field or is it a case of the players ahead of him blocking him on the depth chart?

BB: Well, we'll keep making the best decisions we feel like we can make every week for the team to help us win. All of the players that are here can potentially have a role in that. Based on every game, game plan situations, so forth, we'll try to do what we feel like is best for the team like we always do.

Q: What has stood out to you from the Jets as you dive deeper into studying them this week?

BB: Well, they've played good complementary football. They're a good team. Offensively, they get the ball to everybody, all of their backs, tight ends, receivers, quarterback. They're a well-balanced team, make you defend everybody. Defensively, good team speed, athletic. They have some tough players to block up front and they have good speed in the back end. Special teams - a couple of dangerous returners in [Jeremy] Kerley and [ArDarius] Stewart, their usual strong coverage players - [Rontez] Miles, [Josh] Martin, [Julian] Stanford. [Terrence] Brooks has done a good job for them. A couple of big legs with [Lac] Edwards and [Chandler] Catanzaro, long field goals, kickoffs, long punts. Edwards has changed field position in the punting game several times this year. He did it to help them beat Jacksonville. He did it last week against Cleveland. A lot of young players, 25 new players from when we played them last year, which was Week 16, but a lot of young players and a lot of guys. They brought in some guys, younger veteran types along with their draft choices and so forth from the last couple of years. They're doing a good job.

Q: What sticks out to you about their two young safeties, Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye?

BB: Well, Adams primarily plays strong safety and Maye plays more in the deeper part of the field usually in free safety position. Adams is good in the box and has good strength. Maye has got good ball skills and had a big interception last week in the red area against Cleveland. Yeah, two good, young players.

Q: What are you seeing from Buster Skrine and Morris Claiborne in the Jets secondary?

BB: Well, Skrine's pretty much been in the same role that he's been in. He plays perimeter corner in their two-corner sets and moves inside to the nickel position in their three-corner sets. He's fast, a tough kid, a very competitive player, good blitzer. Claiborne plays on the perimeter and stays on the perimeter. A very athletic guy, long, good quickness, good coverage skills. That's what those two guys do.

Q: Devin McCourty is on pace to finish with about 140 tackles. What have you seen from him in terms of that kind of production?

BB: Well, Devin's a very good tackler, always has been. He's got good quickness, good playing strength and a good feel for the ball. He's fast. He's made some of those tackles in space pursuit from behind that a lot of other guys might not make because of his excellent speed at the position. Tackling's a lot about technique and good fundamentals, putting yourself in a good positon and having the strength to wrap up and get the runners on the ground. I think he and Patrick [Chung] tackle very well at that position. I think [they're] two of the better guys that we've had. I mean, I wouldn't put them in [Rodney] Harrison's category. But you're talking about a Hall of Fame level player in my opinion, but those guys - Devin and Pat - in terms of their tackling are very good. They're very dependable. They're very good in space, which those are hard tackles sometimes when good runners have space to operate. They do a real good job there. Not just running backs with size, but receivers with speed and quickness. They get opportunities with a lot of different types of players. Devin's done a great job for us.

Q: Would you prefer that Devin did not have to make as many tackles as he does from behind?

BB: Well, I mean, you know, I'm not saying they're all from behind. Sometimes players bounce out and go to the sideline and he chases and makes plays on pursuit. Look, if you play defense your job is to get the guy with the ball on the ground. I don't really know what you're referring to. That's your job. When a guy gets it then you chase him and try to tackle him. I mean, that's what all 11 guys do. That's what a good defense does.

Q: Is the fact that so many tackles are being made in the secondary a result of the guys in the front seven not making the tackles first?

BB: Yeah, well, again, I'll go back to what I said the first time that we have 11 defensive players on the field and their job is to get the guy with the ball on the ground, so when you get that opportunity then that's what good defensive players do is they make the tackle. You can't control what the other ten guys do, but when you get your opportunity to make it then the team needs you to make it and Devin has done a good job of that. The opportunities that he's had to tackle, he's pretty close to 100 percent on converting the tackles. He doesn't have many misses.

Q: What in your opinion has made Josh McCown successful at quarterback this year for the Jets and how has he handled defensive pressure?

BB: Well, I think he's been effective throughout his career. I don't think it's limited to a couple of games here. The guy has played 15 years or however long it's been, so he's a good quarterback. He's tough. He's smart. He uses all of his options. He's in a very well-balanced offense with Coach [John] Morton. It's a quarterback-friendly type of offense, like New Orleans runs. What the Jets run is similar to that, has bases in that. He has a lot of options. He uses them. He gets the ball out quick. He's been accurate. He's athletic. He's able to extend plays. I mean, he's over 70 percent completion so he's making a lot of good decisions, throwing the ball accurately and getting the ball in the hands of his playmakers and letting those guys make the plays. He's played well. Not every system is designed that way, but that's where he is now, that's the way he's playing and I think he's playing very well. I mean, I have a lot of respect for him, a lot of respect for his competiveness, his toughness, his leadership.

Q: What have you seen from the Jets stable of running backs this season?

BB: A good group. We know [Travaris] Cadet - a fast, athletic player, good in the passing game, hard runner, tough kid, plays in the kicking game. [Matt] Forte is, obviously, a very experienced guy, a good three-down player, catches the ball well, good inside runner, good vision, good balance. [Bilal] Powell - another good three-down player, catches the ball well, explosive, capable of big plays, good quickness, hard guy to tackle. [Elijah] McGuire's done a good job for them in his opportunities, a good runner, good balance, good quickness. They use him in the passing game, too. Maybe not quite as much as the other two guys, but he's definitely been targeted a number of times, has caught the ball well, run after catch. All of their players, all of their backs, are really, I'd say, three-down backs, can be in there in any down or any situation. They're very good in the passing game, good in the running game, so they use a lot of empty formations and things like that, free releases where they get the backs out into the pattern so they're out quickly as an option, as a receiver and not just as a late check down type of player. They get them out really into the heart of the pattern. Yeah, I'd say that's the group, a versatile group. They're all versatile. They all play. They all contribute. They can run. They can catch. They can play out of the backfield, so they present a lot of challenges to the defense.

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