Invoice Belichick defended Patriots’ expertise stage on offense, admitted staff will ‘discuss’ extra apply reps for Bailey Zappe


Belichick was requested point-blank why Patriots followers must be optimistic concerning the staff’s future.

Bill Belichick
Invoice Belichick answering questions following the Patriots’ loss to the Cowboys. AP Picture/Michael Ainsworth

A day after sustaining the worst lack of his head teaching profession, Invoice Belichick had a easy message throughout his weekly Monday morning interview with WEEI’s “The Greg Hill Present.”

“We’re nonetheless preventing,” he mentioned of the 1-3 Patriots. New England’s 38-3 defeat towards the Cowboys on Sunday resulted in not solely the third quarter benching of quarterback Mac Jones, but in addition accidents to a number of beginning defenders.

“We simply weren’t capable of play nicely sufficient,” Belichick mentioned, acknowledging the apparent. Trying again on the primary 4 video games of the 2023 season, he picked out a serious problem.

“We’ve performed 4 video games, three [of those] video games we turned the ball over and misplaced, one recreation we didn’t flip the ball over and didn’t get sacked and received, so I believe we all know what the components is,” he defined. “We’ve simply obtained to do a greater job with it, and defensively and the kicking recreation, there are issues we have to enhance on there too that we didn’t.”

New England is now off to a 1-3 begin for the third consecutive season.

Belichick was requested point-blank why Patriots followers ought to really feel optimistic about the way forward for the staff.

“Look I’m simply actually involved about doing one of the best job I can for our staff, and I’ll do that each week,” he mentioned in response. “That’s what I can management. That’s what I can do, in order that’s what I’m going to deal with.”

Does he suppose the Patriots are near fixing the staff’s points?

“I believe that’s what we’re going to attempt to do each week,” Belichick replied. “I don’t know. We’ll see on Sunday.”

One of many predominant issues the Patriots have handled is an absence of difference-makers on offense. Except for problem with Jones and the offensive line, New England additionally seems to have a deficit of broad receivers who can get constant separation from opposing defenders.

Belichick stood by the staff’s present roster.

“Yeah I believe we’ve got fairly good expertise on offense,” he countered. “We simply haven’t been capable of finding a superb, constant groove with it.”

“It’s extra a consistency factor,” Belichick added. “One or two breakdowns on every play with another good issues being completed, however finally that one breakdown causes the play to not achieve success. As soon as we get [going] on a extra constant foundation and may remove that one drawback, or one [bad] method, or one elementary factor that comes up on particular person performs, the outcomes can be lots higher. However we haven’t completed a adequate job on that. Till we get there, it’s nonetheless clearly an issue.”

Jones, 25, is now in his third season with the Patriots. Sunday’s defeat was the newest low level in his NFL profession as he was benched with a number of minutes remaining within the third quarter for backup Bailey Zappe. Jones’s last stat line informed the story: 12-of-21 for 150 yards passing, together with three turnovers.

“Typically you’re simply making an attempt to make a play after which remorse it afterwards,” Belichick mentioned of Jones’s decision-making. “Each quarterback’s thrown interceptions, each quarterback’s made unhealthy choices, so has each coach and each participant that’s ever performed, so we simply need to make extra good [decisions] and discover extra consistency in our execution, particularly offensively.”

Although he appeared to point that Jones would stay the starter throughout his preliminary postgame feedback on Sunday, Belichick didn’t rule out Zappe getting extra appears to be like with the primary staff, a minimum of in apply.

“I doubt if something would change considerably, however we’ll discuss that,” he informed reporters of Zappe in a Monday press convention following his WEEI interview. “I don’t know. We haven’t gotten to that time but.”

New England misplaced vital defensive gamers Matthew Judon and Christian Gonzalez through the recreation, each of whom exited and didn’t return after sustaining accidents.

Belichick famous that the staff continues to be in search of extra concrete updates from the medical employees.

“We’ll wait till we get extra info and go from there.”

And with the Patriots now heading into Week 5, it signifies that some gamers who have been positioned on Injured Reserve or got the “Bodily unable to carry out” (PUP) designation previous to the beginning of the season are eligible to return.

Will any of the eligible gamers — an inventory that features consists of Cody Davis, Trey Flowers, Jack Jones, Riley Reiff, and Tyquan Thornton — probably return this week?

“That’s a risk,” he mentioned within the press convention. “As gamers come into that vary of being eligible, then we ramp up the exercise that they do to see how shut they’re and the way nicely ready they’re. So, a few of that may depend upon how issues went over the weekend and the way issues go Monday and Tuesday right here earlier than Wednesday’s apply for gamers like that. So, we’ll see how that goes. Possibly.”

One of many few brilliant spots on the Patriots’ offense has been the flashes of potential proven by rookie broad receiver Demario “Pop” Douglas. Belichick famous that the 2023 sixth-round choose will start returning punts (a job he began throughout Sunday’s recreation).

As for the staff’s future — the Patriots face the 2-2 Saints at Gillette Stadium on Sunday — Belichick was requested if Sunday was merely a one-off debacle or an correct evaluation of the staff’s 2023 outlook.

“We’ll discover out going ahead,” he mentioned. “That’s actually what is going to decide it. Not something that will get mentioned or doesn’t get mentioned. Our efficiency can be what we’re.”