Bill Belichick's PostGame Press Conference Transcript

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October 16, 2011 at 08:52pm ET

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Here's the complete postgame press conference transcript from head coach Bill Belichick following New England's win over Dallas on Sunday.


"That's a good football team we played today.  Really proud of our players, we  went through a lot of adversity today, four turnovers, and down there at the end of the game we had a great drive and we came through with some big plays in the clutch.   You've got to give the players all the credit in the world.  They hung in there, it was a hard fought game.  We just fortunately made a couple more plays than they did, and it's a good win.  It's a tough week of preparation.  Again, that's a good football team."

On how a team that struggled for the majority of the game looked so good down the stretch:

"I think we did a good job all the way around.  Tom did a good job, we got good protection, our wide receivers caught the ball, broke some tackles, got open.  You can't say enough about the offensive line too.  They knew where we were throwing, they pressured us at the end.  They've got some real good pass rushers and we were able to block them long enough to hit some plays.  So it was a good team effort there at the end on the two minute drive, or three minute,  whatever it was, whenever we got the ball back.... 2:40, 2:30...

On his thoughts on the defense as a whole:

"We had our moments.  I thought we missed a lot of tackles today, and that was the biggest problem.  I mean obviously they've got a lot of good runners, guys that can handle the ball and are tough to tackle, the backs, the receivers, the tight end, they're all hard...we've got to do a better job of tackling.  But we were able to play good in the red area and hold them to some field goals and ultimately the touchdowns beat the field goals, so we were fortunate there.  Sure that was a big drive getting the ball back, you know - stopping the run.  It looked like [Brandon] Spikes got in there on a middle linebacker blitz and kind of fouled up the first play, we got them for a negative play, and then the false start penalty kind of helped at the end.  But that was a key series for us.

On the shovel pass, if they'd practiced for it:

"He was actually coming off a blitz on the weak side and when they pulled, it looked like he kind of just got in the back pocket of the puller, and they weren't able to cut him off so he ran it down from the backside.   But they do a good job down there, they have a lot of deceptive plays.  They ran the submarine pass for a touchdown, they ran the roll pass out in the flat to the tailback, so they do stuff like that that's misdirection or plays that are a little bit different down there that you don't get a chance to work on, and fortunately were able to make the play on that, Brandon made a good tackle, and that was a big stop for us.

On his thoughts on the play of Andre Carter:

"He's been playing very well for us.  Andre's very athletic, he's powerful, he's a strong guy, he's got a good power rush and he can also rush off the edge.  He comes hard every play, he's got a great motor.  Nobody plays with more effort than he does, he tees it up every time. You know, sometimes he just outworks those guys."

On what's going through his head on drives:

"I mean the series before we go three and out. It was the same situation and we go three and out on the drive.  It was a good defense.  Dallas is a good football team.  They're hard to move the ball against, especially on longer drives.  They can rush the passer, they're playing a lot of 5, 6, 7 defensive backs in there, or six whatever it was...I mean there was a lot of them.  It wasn't easy today.  You go back out there and you're 80 yards...what was it, an 80 yard drive, something like that?  You're a long way away from the goal line, you haven't really moved the ball all that well.  We had three turnovers, all on offense, one in the kicking game, so yeah, it's tough.  We had some guys step up and make some big plays, Wes, and Aaron, Woody.  Our line did a great job with protection because they were rushing hard, they were coming after us."

On what makes the Cowboys so good:

"They've got good players.  They're well coached and they've got good players."

On what he's seen from Brady over the years:

"There's no other quarterback I'd rather have.  I've said that before, there's no other quarterback I'd rather have.  I'm not going to get into the ranking and all that, but I'm glad he's our quarterback."

On Aaron Hernandez catching the winning touchdown after the fumble from earlier in the game:

"He was able to redeem himself today.  Luckily he got that chance.  That opportunity doesn't always come again, but we've just got to do a better job of taking care of the ball period.  I mean two fumbles, two interceptions, we're not going to win many games with four turnovers.  We were fortunate today, but we won't last doing that."

On the fact Brady was looking to the tight ends in the fourth quarter:

"Well again, it's not so much looking for one guy,  it's taking the pattern and finding the match-ups, and the guys that are open.  We threw to Wes [Welker], we threw to Deion [Branch], we threw to the tight ends, we threw to the backs.  I think the ball got spread around a little bit, and again, some of that's just based on the coverages that they were playing, and it's just how it worked out on those patterns."

On what makes guys like Brady and Montana so special:

"You've got to block all that out and go out there execute.  You've got to be able to play under pressure, whatever the position is.   Go out there, and do your job,  and get rid of everything else and execute the plays.  I mean the situations part of it too, when you're trying to get out of bounds or stop the clock, or run time off the clock or whatever, I mean defintely, that's part of it.  But it really comes down to execution."

On the fact he and Tom seem to be more focused when that's going on:

"I mean you get to a certain point there in the game and there's only a few plays left, and after a couple of those, there's even fewer left.  So you only have a few plays, you've only got a few options, you've got to try to figure out which one's the best one."

On what he learned about the defense today:

"We need to tackle better.  [We] made some stops in the red area, I mean we've been doing that over the course of the year.  We've been fairly good in the red area.   Our third down defense was O.K.   I mean we play competitively, we're getting a little better each week.  I think if we continue to have good practices, improve our fundamental techniques, and practice well, that we can continue to improve in all three areas of the game, but of course on defense."

On their inconsistencies offensively after coming off of a 3-and-out where they were unstoppable at the end:

"Or we'd get 9 yards on the first play.  It's second and one, and we get hit for a loss and it's third and whatever it was 6, 7, 5 whatever it was, and couldn't make the play."

On the injuries in the secondary and if he's happy with what he saw:

"We had our moments today.  There's some things we definitely need to do better.  But I think our guys competed well.  You know Kyle [Arrington] and Devin [McCourty], especially out there, they played a lot of football.   They competed hard, it wasn't perfect.  Leigh [Bodden] gave us some snaps in there on nickel defense.  James [Ihedigbo] has done a good job for us the last couple weeks at safety with the communication and tackling and so forth.  We'll just keep working at it and keep trying to improve."

On what's going through his head during that final drive:

"I don't know, whatever it is, 2:48 to go in the game, whenever we got the ball back, we're on the 20-yard line.  I mean the first thing is we've got to do is get into field goal range and make sure that we have an opportunity to extend the game, at the minimum.  So we're playing to get to field goal range first, and then once we got in field range, depending on how much time we had left, then we could try to win it.  It's kind of similar to the Denver game from whatever year that was  '03, '04, where we drove down and then hit I think it was Branch at the end of the game.  So you're driving into field goal range and then if you get there, then you try to get 7 points to win it.  But make sure that you at least get yourself in position to get the field goal.   We had a couple of good plays there. The first one to Aaron to get out of the hole, we went from the 20 to about the 40 on that.  Then we were able to get the ball up the field on a couple passes to Wes I guess.  Then we got it down there in the red area, the offensive line did a great job.  Tom was able to step up, slide in the pocket, and then made a great throw to Aaron and Aaron made a good catch."