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Transcript: Bill Belichick Press Conference 11/1

Read the full transcript from Patriots head coach Bill Belichick's press conference on Monday, November 1, 2021.


November 1, 2021

On Christian Barmore's development:

BB: He's been out there every day. He's improved in every area. He works really hard, and he's got a really good skill set. He's big. He's long. He's got good playing strength and good quickness. Runs well. He gives good effort. He's made some good chase plays from behind. He's earned his way up there, and he's done a good job in all situations.

On Kyle Dugger's versatility:

BB: Kyle's a very versatile player for us. He plays a lot down by the line of scrimmage but can certainly also play deep and is a strong tackler. He can blitz, cover man-to-man, so we've been able to use him in a lot of different roles. These offenses are hard to match up against with the multiple tight ends we've been seeing every week, and I would say the difference in the tight ends, their skillsets, to be able to just have one player to do that, not have to match up on each guy, is a real luxury. Again, a young player that's gotten some playing time but is still gaining a lot of experience, getting better all the time.

On if he believes players' attitudes and mindsets change with the momentum of winning:

BB: All people are different, so I don't know that everybody reacts the same to everything, but whatever it is, win or lose, you've got to turn the page quickly and move onto the next challenge because those things don't carry too far, and they don't carry too far in a game either. Make a couple bad plays, you can lose that momentum in a hurry. Really just try to focus on each play. One play at a time and each day, one day at a time, and make the most you can out of that opportunity. If you get too caught up in what happened in the past, you'll miss an opportunity in the future. Think too much about what's too far ahead, you miss the opportunity that's in front of you. That's what I've always tried to emphasize. Certainly, there's a positivity to winning, and it gives you a good motivation to come in and do the things that you did that helped you to win, to do more of them and improve. That's a good thing, too, but we've all got to learn from our mistakes. We've had games go the other way that we've had to learn from those, too. That's the NFL season. It's a rollercoaster. Every team goes through challenges, ups and downs, and deals with different things. That's just part of it.

On if he thinks the offensive line is giving Mac Jones enough time to throw:

BB: When you put all five guys together, it's not going to be perfect, especially against a good defensive front and a team that gives as many multiples as the Chargers did yesterday, but again, we've gotten better collectively, and we've gotten better individually. Again, each game brings out its own challenges, but I thought, overall, we pass-protected better than we did in some other games earlier in the year, but overall, offensively, our passing game wasn't as good as what it has been, or what it could be, or what it needs to be. Again, that's a combination of all 11 guys working together, coaching, and everything else. Do we have enough time? In some places we do. Not every play. We've got to just try to develop more consistency and just, overall, more efficiency in the passing game.

On what defensive adjustments the team made after giving up early scores to the Chargers:

BB: Not giving up big plays. You give up a 40-yard pass or a 70-yard run or whatever it was, then yeah. Those plays will cost you some points. We had chances on third downs to stop both of those. They converted. There was more to it than that, but when you shorten the field by that much, it's never a good thing for the defense.

On what he saw before throwing the challenge flag in Sunday's game:

BB: I saw the hold on Kyle [Van Noy]. I thought it happened in the endzone. I mean, I think it did happen in the endzone on [Storm] Norton. The foul was called on the guard. I didn't really hear who the foul was on. I saw it on Norton. I thought it was on Norton, so, obviously, that was a mistake that I made. Thanks for pointing that out. It's my fault. I blew it.

On why Mac Jones was having issues with the timing of his throws:

BB: As I said earlier, I think, overall, we didn't have our best day as a team passing the ball yesterday. We've had better days than that. Hopefully we'll improve on that.

On the thinking behind two of the team's timeouts taken in the second half of Sunday's game:

BB: I didn't think we were clean on the substitution, and the offensive timeout, we didn't get away from the pile and the scrum after the play, and, honestly, there's no chance to get the play in before the 15-second cutoff, so we couldn't get a play in.

On if he would ever consider taking a delay of game penalty to conserve his timeouts:

BB: I don't think, in either one of those situations, I mean, once you start giving up possessions, if you think a possession is worth a timeout, then I guess you could do that. I don't think giving up a possession is worth a timeout.

On Gunner Olszewski and the punt return team's impact on the game:

BB: Gunner did a good job and so did his teammates. The other 10 guys around there did a good job of holding up some of the coverage players, and Gunner did a good job of handling the ball. We got outside and created some good field position for our offense, so really well-executed team plays. Again, Gunner did his job, but so did the guys that created those opportunities for him to get out there, so excellent job by the punt return team. We had a chance for a block but returned the ball well. That always starts with getting the gunners. That was another, obviously, important part of the play, and without that, the rest of the blocking doesn't really matter. Getting the gunners, getting the interior guys, keeping pressure on the punter, and, as I said, we were very close on the block, but we just missed. I thought that unit definitely impacted the game.

On disguising their Cover 2 defensive scheme:

BB: Well, I think our players generally do a good a pretty job of that. Certainly, Devin [McCourty], AP [Adrian Phillips] and Kyle [Dugger] have a lot of experience back there. [Dont'a] Hightower, [Matthew] Judon and [Kyle] Van Noy and those guys playing at the end of the line. Obviously, we try to not make it easy for the quarterback. That's pretty much part of the game plan every week. You never want to just tell them, "This is what we're in," and let them know where to go with the ball. We try to make it hard for them to figure out, change up a little bit on them, and make them read post-snap. It's a pretty fundamental part of our defense every week. It might not be that coverage or a certain look, but somehow, we're going to try to keep the quarterback off balance, either with his post-snap reads, or if it's a team that checks plays based on what they see prior to the snap, then that's, of course, another reason to disguise it.

On what he is expecting from the trade deadline:

BB: I think this is the time of year where the personnel departments always communicate with each other, and we certainly had probably the normal amount of communication with other teams, whether they have interest in a player, want to exchange a player, or maybe they have somebody that, if the right opportunity was there, that they would trade that player. Those conversations go on. We've had those where you talk for a week, 10 days, three or four days, whatever it is, and the situation is imminent, and it never happens. We've had other situations where it's 2 o'clock on a Tuesday afternoon, and something comes up, and you end up doing it. I don't think it really means much today. It's kind of normal to have some kind of conversations. It's also fairly normal Monday, after the game from yesterday, maybe Tuesday morning, for teams to maybe have a little different point of view than they might had on Saturday, Friday or Thursday when we talked to them before somebody got hurt. The guy that was available, they need to keep him. Something happened, and they feel like they just want to move on from the player if the price is right. That kind of thing. Same thing for us. We're sitting here today, and somebody could call, and they lost somebody yesterday and say, "Hey. You have depth at this position. Would you trade so-and-so?" Or not. We'll just see what happens. Honestly, I'm not too worried about that. I think Dave Ziegler and his staff, they have the communications on that. They keep me informed if there's something that looks like might be moving or moving slowly in a direction, but we've wrapped up the Chargers game, and I've already spent quite a bit of time on Carolina. That's really where I'm going to focus my time now. If something comes up, it comes up, and if it doesn't, it doesn't. Sorry. I don't know much more than you do.

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