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Belichick's view of the Dolphins in coachspeak

New England coach Bill Belichick spoke with the Miami media this morning. No, he did not reveal his plans for playing (or sitting) his starters in what is effectively a meaningly less game for the Patriots versus the Dolphins.

But he did give his opinions on Cameron Wake, Tony Sparano, the Miami running game and other issues of note. Here's what he said:

Q: How good did you expect your rookie tight ends to be and why were they able to immediately contribute to your team? 

BB: Well, I think anytime you get a new player on your team, especially a rookie, you never know how it’s going to go, so you just take it day by day and see how they develop and see how they are able to perform the skills that you ask them to do. It becomes a gradual process, but both guys have played a lot of snaps and taken a lot of plays in practice and worked hard and gotten better, so they’ve improved on their skills and been able to develop a role for us in our offense. 

Q: What was it about what you were doing after that perfect regular season in 2007? It seems like you guys were rebuilding while you were consistently winning. What was that process like and what does it all start with? Does it start with rebuilding that defense? 

BB: Well, I think every year we kind of go through the same process. At the end of the season, we look at what our results were and how our team performed and then try to look ahead as to what players we anticipate will have a similar role, what players’ roles may increase and what players’ roles might decrease, and try to take advantage of the opportunities we have to improve our team, whether that’s the draft, free agency, trades, other free agent signings and so forth. Really, it’s the same process every year; we try to evaluate our team and find a way to improve it, and that can come in a lot of different areas. And again, I think regardless of what your record is, you still have to give a fair and critical evaluation of your team, whatever the record was, you still have to look at how it actually performed and what areas you need to improve in and what areas you feel like you want to try to maintain that level of production that comes at a winning level. 

Q: I think we know the answer to this question, but we have to ask it anyway. It’s Week 17, obviously. What’s your plan for how much you want to play your starters? 

BB: Well, we’ll do what we feel like is best for our football team. It’s the same thing we do every week. 

Q: What have you seen out of Cameron Wake from the first time you guys went against him to where he's at now? 

BB: He's really a good football player. We saw that last year. We’ve seen it this year. He's good in the running game, good in the passing game. He's got good length. He's got a good motor. He's strong. He’s got a good variety of pass rush moves. He can get the edge. He can play with power. He can come inside. He's a hard guy to block. He really, I think, does pretty much everything well. He’s got a lot of strong points. 

Q: Does it surprise you that he had to take the route that he did? The first go around he didn’t even make it past training camp and now two years after Canada he's developed this far. 

BB: Well, I think you see that with players on every team. Every team has got their players that weren’t drafted or had their set of circumstances where, for whatever reason, they didn’t start as fast or didn’t have the opportunity early in their career, but then it came later on. So I think the big thing – and again, a lot of those players have improved, too. We’ve certainly had our share of players that where they were when we first got them and where they ended up were two completely different levels. I mean, I wasn’t with him early, so I’m not sure exactly how much that took place, but I’m just saying that I think that players have different paths to success. And you certainly have to give him a lot of credit for his consistency and sticking to it and improving and becoming the player that he has. He's really a good football player. 

Q: With this running game, in previous seasons The Dolphins have done pretty well. This year they’re averaging 3.7 yards per carry. What have you seen from the offensive line or Ronnie Brown or Ricky Williams that you can attribute what’s going on to? 

BB: I think the Dolphins are a good running team. They’re well coached. They have good running schemes. They certainly present a lot of problems to the defense with their blocking patterns and formations and the way they run the ball. That’s not easy, but there are a lot of factors that go into it and again, the score and game situations and so forth, that has a lot to do with it. I know the Dolphins have had a little transition on the offensive line. [Vernon] Carey is an outstanding player. That’s in transition there at guard with [John] Jerry, [Pat] McQuistan and so forth. But Vernon Carey is a big player for them. But in the end, there are a lot of factors and it really comes down to team offense. It’s not just running or passing. All that has to be tied in together with everything: field position, third down, and balance in the offense. I think the Dolphins have a lot of good players. They move the ball consistently. They’ve gotten production out of three receivers. They get production out of their tight end. They’ve got backs that can carry the ball in regular situations [and Lousaka] Polite in short-yardage, so they have a lot of weapons on offense. They’re still a hard team to stop. 

Q: In your estimation, how long does it typically take a quarterback to develop in the NFL coming straight out of college? 

BB: I don’t think there is any set answer for a quarterback or any other position; it can vary. I know when we were at the Giants and had Phil Simms, he was a real high pick – sixth, seventh pick in the draft, whatever it was – in ’79. He had three or four years when the fans and the media and all were talking about him being a bust and wasted draft pick and all that. He's one of the best players that ever played for the Giants. So you look at guys like Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady in their first year or two [and] Phil Simms. There are a lot of examples of guys that didn’t go out and be rookie of the year, but they are some of the best quarterbacks in the league, too. 

Q: What has it been like to coach against Tony Sparano’s teams the past few years? How would you define his teams? 

BB: Tough. Disciplined. They don’t commit very many penalties. You’ve got to go out there and beat them. They don’t beat themselves. You’ve got to go out there and play well. They’ve always been a physical defensive team, hard to run against, a good tackling team, a lot of big, strong, physical guys. Same thing on the offense: good backs, good running game, explosive receivers. I think they’re a tough, physical football team that doesn’t make a lot of mistakes penalty-wise and things like that. You’ve got to work to turn the ball over. You’ve got to play 60 minutes against them, and we’ve split with them the last couple of years, so it’s always a tough battle with the Dolphins. 

Q: I know you guys still have plenty of season left, but down here after this week it’s going to be the offseason. As a head coach, with the current labor crisis, how could all that uncertainty affect the way you prepare your team for the 2011 season? 

BB: Right now we’re thinking about this Sunday against Miami. That’s my focus: the Miami Dolphins. And that’s plenty for us to great ready for, so all those other things will come in due time. 

Q: Since the special teams performance that they had against you guys, the special teams coach has been fired and there have been a couple of personnel changes. From film study, what differences have you seen? 

BB: Well, a good return game, of course, with [Devone] Bess [who is] obviously one of the best returners in the league. [Nolan] Carroll – I think that was his first game against us when he returned kickoffs, and he's done a good job for them. [Patrick] Cobbs, you’ve got to be ready for him. I think their coverage players do a good job – [Reshad] Jones and Cobbs on the punt team. They’ve got some good, physical guys inside – [Lex] Hilliard and [Tyrone] Culver and [Jonathon] Amaya. So, I think they are a good, solid team. They rush the punter. They put pressure [on you], they test your protection. They’ve got good returners. They cover well. They scatter around on the kickoff a little bit and make it hard for you to figure out who’s exactly coming down where. I think [Dan] Carpenter is an excellent kicker. Like any kicker or any specialist, it’s not always perfect, but over time he’s been a pretty solid player for them and he's had some great kicks and some great plays – the 60-yarder or whatever it was. He's certainly capable of hitting them from pretty much anywhere. 

Q: The last few times you’ve played the Dolphins you’ve moved Vince Wilfork out to defensive end. Is that just a strategic thing or how often do you do that with Vince? 

BB: Vince is a versatile player. He’s played a number of different positions for us. He actually played defensive end here his rookie year, so we had Keith Traylor on the nose and Vince play end that year. Again, on a weekly basis, we’ll do what we feel like gives us the best matchup against our opponents to try to win.


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Contrary to popular wisdom that Belli will have the Pats play hard to win, I believe that Belli will try to tank the game in order to save Ireland & Sparano from the Axe.

No one "hearts" Tony & Jeffy & Young Master Chaddeus more than the Pats & the Jets.



You'd think BB was tlaking about the 1985 Bears up there. That's what he always does - makes his opponents seem better than what they are than more often than not - tear them apart come gameday.

Funny, "they don't make many mistakes." How many INTs does Henne have?

lol @ mark

brady has only 4 INT , one of them helle mary .

henne has about 198 INT

Ok, meaningless game. Our run game is obviously suspect. SO, perfect time to let Henne be Henne. Open up the offense, let the ball fly. 3, 4 receiver sets.

If I see 90% 1st-down runs, I'm not sure I'll be able to watch the whole game honestly folks!


I would pay almost anything to see Dan Henning walk away into retirement Sunday. Anyone with a video camera please try to film when the team gets off the plane, and Henning walks slowly to his car. Turns around to get one last glimpse of the team, wipes away a tear. And then, screeches away at 10 mph (seniors don't speed) to the sound of cheering fans everywhere!!!

The End

DC, what song do you think will be playing on Henning's radio as he drives off into the sunset?

Gifts and well wishes for dan henning retirement to be mailed to.....

fins p.o.00000000000000000


Henning will "screech" away in his Rascal, a la Costanza in a Seinfeld episode.

and while it may not be 90%, they've had several chances to 'let Henne be Henne' and for whatever reason they haven't. Don't get your hopes up.

@Mark in T:

"Those were the Days"?

"I did it My Way"?

mark...... (( i will always love you ))).

Seer, henning will go with something from his contemporary collection by your estimation.

I like it.

Mark, I think it'll be 'Ole Blue Eyes, "I did it, myyyyy wayyyyy!!!"

(( good riddance ( time of your life ) .by green day

last one (( all good things come to an end )) nelly frutado

Seer, and that's exactly why Sparano will unceremoniously be let go on the plane home from NE.

All signs are now pointing to Cowher. CraigM better start puking now buddy.

So, that's Henning, Sparano gone for sure. Ireland is now on the hot seat.

What if the last man standing is Henne? Wouldn't that be disgusting? All those men put their career in his hands, and they get canned while he stays to fight another day. Only in the NFL, I tell ya!

ALoco, Henning doesn't even have a cd player (he still listens to vinyl). How would he know Nelly, not to mention Frutado?

(( for your eyes only ))

Hhaha, DC, you beat me to it - Henning wouldn't even know Green Day or Nelly Furtado - I could just hear him now - "I don't understand that crazy rock music you kids listen to these days ..."

Meanwhile Nelly and Green Day are music ripe adults like me listen to ... hahaha.

PS vinyl still has the best sound - just impractical and doesn't last.

Am I the last of the Mohicans that still uses a portable CD player? I found it in the trunk of my car last year and it still works!!

Henning has an Eight-Track. For sure.

"DC, what song do you think will be playing on Henning's radio as he drives off into the sunset"?

My vote; "Killing in the Name" of by Rage Against the Machine.

"F**k you I won't do what you tell me, f**k you I won't do what you tell me, f**k you I won't do what you tell me,,,,,,MOTHER F***ERSSSSSSSS"!!!!!

What car does he drive?

My vote is for a 1978 Cadillac Eldorado - pale blue.

Henning likes the large cars and feeling like he "King of the Road" - which mught be blaring at volume level 2 while he drives off.

Henning has an Eight-Track.

(sorry if this is a re-post)

Denny, might find that one in my portable cd player at the gym. Definitely in my collection!


Biggest seller here for years among the Condo Commandos was Mercury Marquis.

denny, cool down ..i do what ever mark tells me .lol

Ouu, the Marquis is a beauty!

Don't feel a thing as you bump your way through the parking lot.

It's just coachspeak.

Has there EVER been any coach who didn't up the opposition? It'd be refreshing, actually, but I won't hold my breath waiting for it.

Some are worse than others, of course. Bobby Bowden could have been facing off against North Dakota Clown College and made them sound like the Roman Hordes coming to sack Gaul.

Mark, lol, portable cd player? That's too funny.

How can you carry around a big bulky piece of metal like that when the world is full of palm sized MP3 players that will fit your entire music library?!

Seriously Mark, go buy an 8gb Microsoft Zune or an Apple I-pod, it will change your life!

Funny aloco.

I know Denny, I've gone through 2 iPods in my life already. I will go back to them again soon - just enjoying my time with the CD player and my old collection - I think I was in my mid 20s when I bought it - ahh, the memories. If you are under 30 - you will appreciate the intangible value of objects you bought when you were in your early 20s when you get to 35+.

Not only do you have to carry the thing but then you have to carry a bunch of cds around with you or just listen to the same cd over and over. Geez Mark is it still 1991 in Canada? GET AN MP3!!!! :)

I must admit that I get a touch embarassed when I have to stop running or lifting to change the CDs in mid workout, hahaa


Denny, I wish it was 1991 still. I would be 17 years old!!!!

I only listen to lesbian folk music on 8-track.

in old days , you buy the cd's then you BUY the wall unit then you buy cd holder then you buy the dividers then when you ran out of space you repeat the same thing agin ..........now APPLE PUTS A LOT OF PEOPLE OUT OF BIZ WHO SHOULD NOT BE THERE IN FIRST PLACE AND KEEP ALL THE MONEY TO THEMSELVES THROUGH IPOD.........

I hear ya Mark. I was 19 and loving life. Yeah I had a bunch of kids make fun of me a while back because I was still listening to my cds on a portable. And one of them pulled out his mp3 and said I have more than triple the amount of songs on here as you have in your cd case. That made me change over and I haven't gone back. But I know what you mean about getting nostalgic.

He's gone by the Grateful Dead....

He's gone, gone. And nuthin's gonna bring him back...He's gone.


aloco. listen to dr roberts. he knows his football.lol

The last thing I'll say about the mp3 thing is don't get an I-Pod. The software sucks and it has a mind of it's own. The Microsoft Zune is easier and much more user friendly. I've had mine for 4 years and haven't had one problem.


Damn mp3 players and iPods. I used to buy cd's and FIRST thing, open the cover and go through the liners. Who produced what track, who was on what track, shout outs, thank you's. Those were the days.

Now you people listen to the trash they call music nowadays, autoTUNE ME OUT! Gimme the "shh" noise from a needle on a record ANYDAY!

These pseudo-deejays, with their CD tables, complete travesty. Jam Master Jay is rolling in his grave right about now.

aloco.the fat lady has sung on the dolphins season..lol

DC, I'm with you. Over the past year - I made a conscious decision to stop downloading music and went back to buying CDs just to I caould see the artwork - read the liners. I found that during my music downloading period of 2000-2009 I lost touch with the artists - I knew music but not the artists. I stopped going to live shows.

Now I make the effort to got to one live show a month and buy 4 cds a month and read the liners from front to back.

I can always rip the cds to be placed on an mp3 player later on.


why wouldnt belichick say good things about sparano he knows he could out coach him any day of the week and give tony six timeouts a game and he still wouldnt know what to do with them hahaha you better believe belichick hopes the fist pumper stays

FYI, I LIKE MY BOOKS!!! I don't WANT a stupid Kindle. How do you impress people with a wall full of bookshelves when you have a Kindle?

"Oh, look at my book list in my Kindle. Isn't it amazing I read all those?" PLEASE.

And when a friend asks about a book, and I can be, "got exactly what you're looking for," and hand it over. How do you do that with a Kindle?

And WHY, if I stare at a screen ALL DAY, do I want to stare at another one when I'm reading in my free time? Pray tell!

Technology Schmecknology.

I dont know if many of you noticed it but BB did take a Ninja shot at Henning.

"That’s not easy, but there are a lot of factors that go into it and again, the score and game situations and so forth, that has a lot to do with it."

This is pretty much the area where Henning failed us. He also sort of endorsed Henne:

"I know when we were at the Giants and had Phil Simms, he was a real high pick – sixth, seventh pick in the draft, whatever it was – in ’79. He had three or four years when the fans and the media and all were talking about him being a bust and wasted draft pick and all that. He's one of the best players that ever played for the Giants."

So in reading BB, we maybe only just a really good OC and a couple offensive pieces away from being a playoff calibre offense.

Im sure in his assessments BB was looking at how he would use the personel we have, not how they are currently being used and flawed in game situations we have witnessed.

Back to the Dolfinless........Some one get Marino out of the studio and onto the field! Even Marino at 55 is better than the garbage we have now!!!! At least be a QB coach to show a mutha faka how to throw the damn ball to OUR guys when the game is on the line.


CB...That was all coach speak for...I LOVE KICKING THE HELL OUT OF YOUR STAFF AND YOU GUYS HAVEN'T BEEN RELEVANT SINCE 2000.....please don't change........

Aloco....it doesn't matter...there both just sites to track your whereabouts and connect the dots of people who know each other....your making it easy for them


BB said we have one of the best run blocking schemes in the league. I believe he isnt just blowing smoke up our tailpipes.

So this leads to to believe its not a matter of revamping our running game. Its a matter of improving it. I believe this can happen in two ways:

1. Get a serious upgrade to Ronnie Brown.

2. Or add a dynamic speed back and keep Brown.

Keeping Brown means he must accept a heavily incentive laden new contract. What he's actually paid would be heavily dependant on what he's actually able to produce.

So if he totally sucks in 2011, we can cheaply disgard his ass in 2012. LOL............

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