October 02, 2002
Pats Injury Front Improving
BY: Ian Logue/PatsFans.com
FOXBORO, MA -- The injury list remains fairly long, although not quite as bad as last week for the Patriots.
New England released their list of injured players on Wednesday, listing G Joe Andruzzi (Knee), WR Troy Brown (Knee), TE Daniel Graham (Shoulder), DE Rick Lyle (Back), DE Anthony Pleasant (Shoulder), and G Damien Woody (Leg) as questionable for Sunday's game against the Dolphins.
Head coach Bill Belichick as usual didn't get into the specifics on
any of the players, or the severity of their injuries.
"Nobody has any real long-term situations. They are all manageable, they're all day-to-day. We'll just have to see how quickly they come around."
Meanwhile just like last week's game the Patriots will be heading to Miami a day early to prepare to face the Dolphins. With Friday set as their travel day their only real days of preparation are Wednesday and Thursday. Belichick feels it's more important to get his players as much rest as possible, and with a hot and humid forecast looming for Sunday's game it's probably not a bad idea.
"It's one of our longer trips of the year and I just felt it would give us a little more chance to rest the day before the game rather than travel down there," said Belichick. "I thought from a preparation standpoint that worked out ok last week as well."
As for the Dolphins they have 11 of their own players listed on the injury report, including defensive back Patrick Surtain (Knee) who is listed as questionable (50% chance he'll play), along with CB Sam Madison (Shoulder), and defensive end Jason Taylor (Knee) who are listed as Probable (75% chance they'll play). The Dolphins are coming off of a 48-30 defeat against Kansas City last weekend, allowing 450 total yards on offense.
Meanwhile Belichick is looking for a better performance from his team defensively this weekend. They allowed 180-yards rushing to Kansas City's Priest Holmes along with 217 yards rushing to Chargers runningback LaDanian Tomlinson.
Those are numbers that amounted in one near-miss and one defeat. At 3-1 this is a key divisional game that he expects to be a better executed contest by his team.
"It's execution," said Belichick. "It's team defense. If 11 guys have to do their job, then when they do, you play good as a team. When they don't then you don't play as well."
"It's team defense. Everybody's got to take their part and again from a coaching standpoint, we need to do a better job collectively starting with me and going all the way down. We need to do a better job of coaching. We need to do a better job playing. So we're all accountable."
"Every great play isn't made by the coach and every bad play isn't made by a player. It's a combination of all of us working together to perform more effectively."
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