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Bill Belichick Postgame Press Conference Transcript

Posted Dec 10, 2012

New England Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick addresses the media at Gillette Stadium following a regular season game versus the Houston Texans on Monday, December 10, 2012.

BB: That’s a good locker room in there right now. Those guys feel real good about the way they played and they should. The players really did a heck of a job tonight, all the way across the board. We got good contributions from all three phases. I thought those guys really tried to play the game the way we need to play it. Houston is a good football team, but we just did a few things better than they did tonight. Again, the players, this is a long week for them. It was a lot of preparation. It was a lot of getting ready for a team we hadn’t played in a couple years, that is a real good football team with a lot of good football players. But those guys worked hard all week and it definitely showed up tonight. I’ll take my hat off to the job they did. Like I said, they feel good about the way they played tonight and they should, they did a good job.

Q: How important was Aaron Hernandez’s versatility tonight against the Houston front seven?

BB: Everything is important. Every guy has to step up and do their job. They do a lot of man-to-man, a lot of five-man rushes so everybody has a guy to block, everybody has a man to beat and get open. It’s a lot of one-on-one matchups. Everybody has to do a good job; Aaron, but the other 10 guys too. That’s a lot of the way they play and everybody has a tough matchup.

Q: Your defense kept the Texans to 2-for-14 on third-down conversions. Can you talk about your defense today?

BB: Again, we got good contributions from everybody. The players did a good job. We had some third-and-longs, which was a big part of playing better on first and second down. We rushed, we covered, we tackled. I thought we were physical out there. We played a good, solid football game in all three phases. We had real good field position, special teams did a good job giving the defense good field position. Our offense had some good, long drives early in the game, gave us a chance to get settled down. They hit a couple plays early on us but we were able to get things straightened out without too much damage getting done. That was a big interception by Devin [McCourty] to take them out of the scoring zone early in the game. That was a huge play for us. We got good play from everybody – the line, the linebackers, the secondary – they all played well.

Q: Is there anybody in the league more valuable than Tom Brady?

BB: I don’t know. We don’t play everybody in the league. He’s our quarterback and I’m glad we’ve got him.

Q: Is that running game one of the best you have played all year, especially with Arian Foster?

BB: They have a good running game period. They’re well coached, they have a good scheme, they’re all good backs – [Ben] Tate’s a good back, they’re all good backs. They have a very good line. Our guys competed well. They hit some plays on us but we battled and I thought we [held] our own.

Q: Does the outcome of the game dictate how quickly you turn the page? Or are you on to San Francisco regardless of a win or loss?

BB: Every week is the same. We have to turn the page every week. Whatever happens, we have to move on and we will.

Q: Did everything in the run defense start with Vince Wilfork? It seemed like he was everywhere in the first half.

BB: Defensively everybody has to control their responsibility and you can’t control where the back runs. Sometimes the back runs to where you are and sometimes he run somewhere else but as long as you’re doing your job and taking care of your area, the man that’s blocking you in the blocking scheme, then that’s what matters. We can’t control where the back goes. He could go in a lot of different places and hopefully if we’re all in the right spot we can do a good job defending the play. But you know, Vince always does a good job in there. He does a great job of taking care of his area and tackling, he’s physical and very instinctive. He does a good job but one guy can’t make the tackle if the other guys don’t do their job, I know that. So, you can be great on defense but if there are holes where the back is running, you’re not going to make many tackles so it’s about team defense.

Q: It looked like you guys had a plan for J.J. Watt that your guys executed well up front.

BB: Of course, he’s the best defensive player in the league so we definitely planned for him. And [Antonio] Smith, they have a lot of good players. Our line, they knew they had a big challenge and they prepared hard. They stayed in this week watching a lot of extra film, really trying to study up. I thought the offensive coaches had a good game plan, we had a good way to attack them but most importantly the players played well. We had different guys blocking different people throughout the game but we were pretty competitive against them. That’s good defense.

Q: I know you do not give much credence to it, but it was a Monday night game –

BB: We can’t control when the game is, just the opponent so we’re not really worried about that.

Q: On the first touchdown to Brandon Lloyd, it looked like it was a good route but also a good play fake from Tom Brady.

BB: Yeah, I thought our play-action game helped us. We had a few plays on that. Definitely that was a hard-sell action, good protection, Brandon broke clean on it, Tom made a great throw, as he did on the long pass to [Donte’] Stallworth too. We hit a couple deep balls against them and that’s always good when you can get a lot of yards in one play, you don’t have to drive it 12, 14 plays. It was good to get a couple big, big plays like that. That was well executed – that was great protection, great run fake and Brandon got a couple steps there behind the secondary and Tom hit him so it was a well executed play, the players did a good job on that.

Q: Did you want to take some deep shots coming into the night or was that something the coverage dictated?

BB: Yeah, always. We don’t want to throw deep if they have four guys back there. If we have an opportunity, then sure. If we don’t, then no, we don’t want to throw it just to lob it up there to two or three guys. It just depends on where they are, we have to read the coverage and throw it to the open guy.