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PATRIOTS: Jets Give You a Lot to Prepare For

Posted Nov 20, 2012

Transcripts of conference calls by New England's Bill Belichick and Devin McCourty with Jets reporters Tuesday:

PATRIOTS HEAD COACH BILL BELICHICK

On the challenges of having to prepare for the Jets running backs…

It’s always difficult. All of them are very skilled and talented. Different styles, but all productive and effective so you definitely have to have an awareness of who’s in the game and how to tackle them, the type of things they do. It’s just one of the many things that is a preparation issue for the Jets. They do a lot of things in all three phases of the game, give you a lot of different looks, use different personnel and personnel combinations, groupings, so it’s a lot to prepare for.

On how the loss of Rob Gronkowski will affect the offense…

Well, we’ll see. I don’t know. We’ll see.

On if he’s surprised the Wildcat plays have been ineffective for the Jets…

I think that those things, sometimes you have to be careful about judging a couple of plays individually. Obviously, the Jets have used some version of that package all year. And defensively, it makes you prepare for it and spend time on it and just like their fake punts and their blitzes they use, things like that. You can’t get ready for all of it. Sometimes one thing gets stopped and either opens up something else or it just doesn’t give their opponent time to prepare for everything. They find a weak link in the chain somewhere along the line.

So I think the bottom line is the total production and try to just zero in on one little thing that sometimes can be a little bit misleading. But I think they have a good package. Obviously, Tim [Tebow]'s an outstanding player, can do a lot of things. And there are a lot of different versions of that type of play that they run, the options, the sweeps, throwing the ball, counters and misdirection plays and short yardages and everything else. So the defense definitely has to spend time preparing for it and the more time they spend on that, the less time they spend on something else.

On if they’re spending the same amount of time preparing for Wildcat plays as they would during a normal week…

We’re going to use the time that we have this week to prepare for the things that we’ve seen the Jets do and the things that we anticipate that they might do because of us. So that’s how we’ll spend the week, we’ll allocate our time that way.

On how Mark Sanchez has been playing this season…

Well, he played really well against St. Louis. But I mean, obviously, he played well against us, that’s the most important thing. He makes all his throws, acts athletic in the pocket, he’s always a threat to run. I think the play-action game is good. He’s using all the receivers, getting the ball to the back and tight end. [Dustin] Keller’s certainly been a good guy for him to get back here the last couple weeks, used as receiver. He's done a good job of audibling, and checking plays at the line of scrimmage is part of their package. I think he’s done a good job.

On how the Jets defense has changed since they last played…

As you know, in our game they had [Isaiah] Trufant playing in their nickel defense, so they made a change there. Eric Smith played the last couple weeks, he didn’t play against us. You know it sounds like they're getting a lot of production out of all those defensive lineman. [Mike] DeVito’s played well, Muhammad [Wilkerson]'s played well, the linebackers they’re using, they started [Demario] Davis in our game, they’ve used him and [Bart] Scott and [David] Harris. Looks like they’re using a good number of people like they usually do, but I think they’re getting good production from all those mobile guys in the front. [They] added, like I said, another guy in the linebacker group with Davis.

And then the secondary looks like they’ve gained Smith back from when we played them and lost Trufant. At least that's the way it looks like, but that’s the big differences. Scheme-wise, they continue to mix it up. You know, as you guys can see watching the game, they put plenty of pressure on Seattle and plenty of pressure on St. Louis. As always, they do a good job of mixing up their looks. [Quinton] Coples, I think he’s definitely come along and gotten better through the course of the season and he’s played well here as the games have gone on.

On what he liked about LaRon Landry during his free agency…

We talk to a lot of players in free agency, obviously, like all teams do. Talk to guys, talk to agents, visit some, give some physicals, so on and so forth. That’s all part of the process. But I think LaRon’s played well for the Jets. He and Bell both added a good level of experience at the position. LaRon’s fast, gets to a lot of plays, makes a lot of tackles, physical player when he gets there, is a contact player, been strong in the running game and presents a very athletic, fast, hard-hitting safety back there. Whether they play him up or back, they’ve used him both, close to the line of scrimmage, the deeper part of the field. He’s one of the more athletic safeties in the league but he’s also big and a heavy hitter so he adds a lot to their defense.

PATRIOTS CB DEVIN McCOURTY

On the upcoming conference move of his alma mater, Rutgers…

I think it’ll be pretty cool. I’m already starting to trashtalk all the Big Ten guys.

On the short week…

It’s been fast, I think. A lot of us are just trying to get a lot of film study in and as much rest and treatment to get your body ready to turn around and play another game on Thursday. For us, it’s a lot of mental work to try and be prepared for a game without doing your normal routine. You have to change some things. I think guys are just putting in a lot of time and effort right now trying to get back healthy and trying to get the mental focus in.

On Mark Sanchez…

We just know we have to keep rushing him and be ready to play. We know at any time he’s a good quarterback. He can make plays with his arm. He’s a mobile guy that can get the ball down the field once he gets on the move. For us, we just prepare. He’s someone we see twice a year. We just prepare and get ready to go.

On if preparing for the Wildcat has become less of a priority…

I think, defensively, what’s tough about playing this offense is they do a bunch of different things. With the Wildcat packages, it’s something we have to be prepared for. When you’re playing one game every Sunday, it doesn’t matter how things have come and gone throughout the season. With the different guys they use back there, that can turn into a big weapon for them. We just prepare for any type of package a team does. We have to be ready because if it shows up and it works, we’ll see a lot of it.

On if they are preparing for the Wildcat…

We prepare for all the packages that the team does.

On if practice is different during a short week…

I think the biggest thing is the time. You just have to turn around and jump head first into everything. You don’t have much time. You don’t have that day off to rest and to study a lot of film on your own. A lot of us have been in here together just trying to watch film and get ready to go together more than anything.

On playing without Rob Gronkowski…

That’s for the offense. On defense, we don’t really think about that side of the ball. We’re more focused on what we have to do and to be prepared to go for our side of the ball.

On Aqib Talib…

He’s a great player. I think seeing him be able to go out there and play, he does a good job of covering receivers and being physical. As we saw last week, he got the ball and was able to score points for us. I think we’re using him and catching him up and getting him going. I think the more he plays with us, the better we’ll be as a unit.

Preseason Live: New York Jets

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