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Transcript: Bill Belichick Press Conference

Read the full transcript from Patriots head coach Bill Belichick's press conference on Monday, December 26, 2022.


December 26, 2022

Q: Going back to the game, I meant to ask you after, in what ways did you think the weather conditions sort of affected the way the game was played?

BB: I don't know, typical December game.

Q: So more in the kicking game or the hard ball wind? I mean anything stand out to you?

BB: No, there was a little wind. Not that bad.

Q: Couple plays I wanted to ask you about. The initial third down play on offense, the third-and-4, on something like when you watch that back would you like to see it maybe one more route there like available at the sticks for Mac [Jones]? It seemed like multiple players were further down the field maybe with Rhamondre [Stevenson] the only one sort of near the sticks. I'm just curious how you view that play.

BB: Yeah, we had a couple mistakes on the play. It's not the play we were trying to run.

Q: Then defensively, you guys did some really good things in the second half. I was looking at two plays in the third quarter, the third-and-1 stop just to sort of keep it a three-possession game at that point. What did you see on that? That was a sneak from [Joe] Burrow that you guys were able to hold up. What did you see on that play that allowed it to be successful for you guys?

BB: Yeah, good penetration inside. Good pad level.

Q: Then the other one was the pick six. Looked like a blitz call, what did you see on that? It seems like such a balance with Burrow and that offense when you pick your spots on when to come after him like that. What did you see on that play?

BB: I don't know. You'd have to ask Cincinnati about that. Looked like Burrow threw one thing, [Ja'Marr] Chase ran something else. Marcus [Jones] saw the throw, made a good play and obviously made a great run.

Q: I wanted to ask you about Rhamondre and ball security. Obviously, he's been playing through some stuff. Does that play any role in those types of situations? Or how would assess what we saw obviously on the first down play on the 5-yard line?

BB: Rhamondre's ball security has been pretty good all year. He had the ball knocked out on the start of the second half there. Yeah, he had two hands on the ball. They're running him back and they knock it out at the end.

Q: Just looking at your team right now at 7-8 going into the Miami game, what's your up shot on who this team is and what the opportunities are ahead of you in these final couple games?

BB: Well obviously taking it one game at a time like we always do. So need to get ready to play our best game against Miami this week.

Q: With Hunter Henry when he goes and leaves a game, how much does your play calling change or how much is it limited considering how much he's involved? Then even with Jonnu [Smith], how much did that change things for you guys in terms of what you could call offensively?

BB: Well, Scott [Washington] was ready to run the things that he ran. I thought he did it for not much practice and the first time he was activated, I thought he stepped in and did a pretty good job. Anytime you have two tight ends on your roster and you lose one, it affects some of your two tight end calls. But as I said, fortunately we had Scott at the game. So we were able to do some of that. We ran a little bit more three receivers than two receivers after that.

Q: Just wondering what you've seen from Christian Barmore since he came back from his injury?

BB: Good to have him back. He looks like he's got his power and explosiveness back. It's good to have him. You know each game – he's spent a couple of games, each game he's gotten a little bit better. Hopefully he'll keep trending that way.

Q: On Scotty Washington, I know he hasn't played much, just wondering what you've seen from him in practice? I think he used to be listed as a tight end, lost some weight, now at least on the website he's listed as a receiver. Just kind of wondering what you see from him as a player?

BB: He's really only practiced at tight end for us. But he's in kind of that in between body type that's somewhere between a tight end and a receiver. It's been good to have him. He lacks some experience but has picked things up as he's come along here each week. We felt like going into this game we needed a little bit more depth at that position with the skill position with Devante [Parker] out. As it turned out we needed it.

Q: I just wanted to follow up on Rhamondre and the ball security. On that final play there from a coaching perspective, is that one where you coach up knowing the journey is over and get down? Or is that one you look at and say that's a close call on forward progress, he had two hands on the ball and it's that more than know the journey is over and get down?

BB: Yeah, I'm not going to second guess Rhamondre on what he did.

Q: Then one last one, just like mechanically on the coaching staff upstairs people, do you have someone that their specific job is to count players on the field? So if you want to challenge an extra man on the field, that they can buzz down to you and let you know that?

BB: Well, it would depend on the situation, what side of the ball we're talking about and all that. But there's a general awareness to things like that, yes.

Q: I'm wondering is it when you have a player like Marcus Jones who's involved in kind of all three phases, since defense is his primary phase, is it hard to kind of pick and choose where to stick him in on offense? Are there only a certain amount of plays or is it possible to even see him a little more in the offense?

BB: Well Marcus is – he's had more in the last few weeks. But anytime when you have a situation like that where you have a specialty player playing one side of the ball or another, at this point in time mid-season where the person doesn't really have a full background on that side of the ball whether that's Troy [Brown], or Julian [Edelman] playing defense, or Mike Vrabel playing tight end, or Marcus playing his role. I think to try to conceptually teach them the entire system, that's not something that we have done or probably would ever do. So there are certainly limitations on how far those players, Marcus in this case would be able to go. But can we use them a little more? Can we add on to what he's done? Sure. But I don't think he'll ever be a full – have the full receiver playbook if you will at this point in time. Definitely not with his other responsibilities as well on defense and in the kicking game.

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