HEAD COACH BILL BELICHICK
October 19, 2019
Q: How has N’Keal Harry been at practice this week?
BB: He’s coming along. Yeah, he’s coming along.
Q: Has he been able to catch up a little bit to reach the level at which you’re practicing?
BB: Yeah, you know, he’s getting back into the practice routine. We have other guys taking reps for game plan stuff, so most of it’s scout team.
Q: How do you make sure the knowledge he gains from studying the playbook applies on the field?
BB: Just take extra time to do it. Practice time’s really allocated to getting the team ready for the Jets, but there’s other times we can work on it.
Q: Will this be more of a redshirt year for Yodny Cajuste or will he have a chance to practice?
BB: We’ll see. Let’s keep taking it day-by-day here and see how it goes.
Q: I’m sure when you signed Eric Tomlinson on Tuesday he let you know that he had something going on Wednesday. Does that sound about right with Kyle Van Noy and James White having babies as well? It seems like that’s been the theme.
BB: Yeah. It has been, yeah. Adding a lot of team members – players and other staff.
Q: What has he shown over the past few days?
BB: He’s getting there. I mean, it’s obviously a lot of ground to make up, but he’s working hard at it. Nick Caley has spent a lot of time with him, so we’ll see.
Q: Do you get anxious to get back on the field given the time off between games?
BB: Yeah, you get into a routine, ready to play every seven days. But, we play them when they schedule them, so that’s all we can do.
Q: How much do your options change when Rex Burkhead can’t play?
BB: Well, look, you’d like to have everybody for every game. It doesn’t always happen. If it doesn’t happen, then you adjust and work with the people that you can work with. So, we’ll see how it goes with Rex and some of the other guys. Yeah. Part of having a long week, it gives you a little bit of extra time, so we’ll see how it comes together here today and tomorrow with some of these guys.
Q: How important is it for a running back to get into rhythm?
BB: I don’t know.
Q: Does it help for a guy to have a few productive runs to get into a rhythm, or to go to him a couple plays in a row?
BB: Sure, I think everybody likes to have productive plays. But, yeah, I don’t know. You’d have to talk to individual players about that.
Q: How will MetLife Stadium holding a game on Sunday affect you on Monday night in terms of the condition of the field?
BB: Yeah, I don’t think it’ll make much difference. I mean, I was in Giants Stadium for 12 years. It was pretty much like that multiple times in every year. It was at least three or four times in every year that teams had games, or there were college games or something. So, there’s nothing we can do about that. We’ll be ready when our game comes, and that’s all we can control.
Q: Is there a balance between coaching patience and aggressiveness for a running back?
BB: I think you always want to try to have as many good plays as you can. That goes for everybody. You can have the same discussion on every position. It’s the same thing.
Q: How impressive has Marshall Newhouse been coming in and picking up the system so quickly?
BB: Yeah, well it’s probably fortunate for Marshall that he had some kind of decent background in our terminology, and somewhat in our system, from Buffalo. But, yeah, there certainly was a lot thrown at him in a hurry. He handled it well, and I think each week’s gotten a little bit better. It’s not quite the same as going through everything from the very beginning, but it’s the best we can do. He’s done well with it. He and Dante [Scarnecchia], Carmen [Bricillo], spend a lot of time trying to get caught up on things, and I think he’s done a pretty good job of that.
Q: We talk a lot about the circle of trust with Tom Brady and his receivers, but is there something similar with the offensive line?
BB: Yeah, no question. Yeah, you have five guys blocking five guys, and sometimes you have five blocking six in pass protection. But, yeah, five blocking five – that’s the running game on every play, so making sure that those five see the way the other five unfold, and how to handle their responsibility, and then the tight ends, and the backs and however the rest of the blocking goes handles what’s left. But, pass protection, a lot of times, is five-for-six, and making sure that you get the five that rush, or the five most dangerous if they bring all six, passing off games, and different looks and so forth. That’s really what the offensive line does. I mean, that’s a huge part of their job. It can’t be underestimated or understated.
Q: It seems like Chase Winovich has kept a low profile with the media. Has he been a big personality behind the scenes?
BB: No, Chase works hard. Really studies the game. We’ve asked him to do some things differently than what he’s done in college, but he’s embraced that. He’s tried really hard to do whatever we’ve asked him to do. Gives a tremendous effort, on and off the field, to do things right and to help the team in any way he can. So, no issues at all with that.
Q: I just meant he’s kind of a goofy guy.
BB: He works hard at football. He tries to do his job. I think we all respect that.
Q: With all of the linebackers you have that can rush the passer, what kind of advantage do you get when you have so many guys up in a two-point stance around the line of scrimmage that can rush or drop into coverage?
BB: Yeah, I don’t know. It’s good to have good players out there, and guys that are productive. They’re smart and can handle multiple responsibilities, so we either stand them up or don’t stand them up. I don’t know.
Q: Is there any advantage you see in that versus having guys with their hand down like a defensive lineman?
BB: Yeah, sure. In the end, though, it’s pretty close to the same. Get-off’s better than from a three-point stance. Overall vision and ability to adjust, stance or alignment, it’s certainly better from a two-point stance. But in the end, I don’t think it’s that big of a deal. A lot of good players play both, and some of our guys do both. Sometimes, some guys are down; sometimes they’re up. So, I don’t think it’s that big of a deal.
Q: Is that something you ask before each play, or is it up to them which stance to use?
BB: Yeah, it depends. It varies. It could be both.
Q: What have you seen from Gunner Olszewski after his first two catches last week?
BB: Yeah, Gunner works really hard. He gives a lot of effort to do, again, whatever we ask him to do. Whether that’s return kicks, cover kicks, block, catch – he works really hard. Just gives his best all of the time, so you can’t ask for anything more than that. He keeps getting better, so we’ll see where it goes. But, yeah, he’s a good, hard worker.
Q: Is there a memory that stands out to you from Monday Night Football, its place in the game?
BB: Yeah, I’m sure it’s exciting for the fans. It’s certainly a highlight game. There have been a lot of great Monday night games. I’ve been a part of some of them, but the most important thing for us is just the game that’s on our schedule and going out and performing well the one opportunity a week we get to do that. So, if it’s Monday night, it’s Monday night. If it’s Sunday, it’s Sunday. If it’s Saturday, it’s Saturday. If it’s Thursday, it’s Thursday. Eventually we’ll play on all of those days, but our focus is just on the week and going out there and performing well when we get the opportunity. Schedules and all that – there’s nothing we can really do about that. It’s not like college. We play them when they schedule them.
Q: Do you ever feel like today’s Friday with the week’s schedule? I’m having a tough time.
BB: Yeah, totally. This whole week’s been like that. Get ready, next week will be screwed up, too.
Q: I know you don’t like to look too far ahead, but Halloween’s coming up. Anything special planned that you’re looking forward to?
BB: Yeah, right now I’m looking forward to the Jets, Tom [Curran].