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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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Rember that drop kick that Belicheat called for about 3-4 years ago against us in another meaningless last game of the season....

It was the 1st drop kick in the NFL in like 40 years...WTF was he saying them.....and the game was still in reach


BB was being very sincere. He was right there's lots of really good talent on this squad. But if you're any good at all in reading between the lines, he was also saying it's not always used correctly. Without just coming out and saying we dont always use it correctly.

Im sure if BB were our coach he would be fine with the talent on our squad but would do some things much differently to get better results.

Aloco....those sites...facebook/my space are tracking sites....you make it easy for them to track you by telling them who know friends/family

I never go on that site...

NFL just fined Brett Farve $50,0000. No big deal, probably just a night at roulette table in Vegas. LOL....................


I read between the lines DB....I saw....your coaches are idiots....just like you said.....but I also saw him reach by bringing up 1980s football...he of all people know football isn't played like that anymore....

You had a classic post a ways back that talked about BB and his team flying around in UFOs, while we are still on horse and chariot....I saw more of that in his post

$50.000.00 I wonder if that is enough for a night with Dez Bryants mom?

Agreel Aloco...this is where the good guys are.....warts and all

Even you guys are behind the times...Get a SMARTPHONE (Droid/WP7/Iphone) in that order

Droid and WP7 support micro SD cards that go up to 32 GB. Which is enough storage to hold more songs than you could ever dowload

And if you still BUY music, you're a moron

Daryl...what are you talking about man? did you read that was the going rate?




With Dez's rookie contract she may now have her own brothel. Im sure she "flatback's" no more.

Now I see...I guess my page loaded slower.....

Cam Newton price is 200,000....I wonder what his mom is worth

New blog up:

Fish fans better hope that they don't hire Cowher if Sparano is canned. The Hoodie has always had his way with Cowher.

Sounds like Sparano and Henning both will have jobs with the Pats if they leave the Fins?? I hate the Pats, but I respect what they've been able to do. Belichick may hold the record for Super Bowls by the time he's done.

Belichich should just send someone else to the interviews for him. He never answers any questions. Anyone can recite the political garbage he reels off.

Actually, it was pretty impressive that Bellicheck knew Amaya and Culver by name...

The dude is certainly PREPARED!

DyingBreed, BB said we have a good blocking scheme, not necessarily good blocking or good players. He only metioned Carey who is not even playing. LMAO He wasn't being too complimentary.

What is Sparano and company paying BB to say this crap. There is no way BB really means even half of that stuff he said. "They don't beat themselves"? Are you f'n kidding me? If I had to guess, BB wants Sparano, Henne, Henning, Ireland, Lee all to return just so he can give us the usual two spankings a season. This was laughable at best.

Did anybody else get the email today how to store your fanvision? Store it? R they kidding? For what I threw mine away

should be coach hunting come monday!

the only bowl henne will ever see is the toilet bowl!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

They don't beat themselves??? Are you kidding me??? They consistently beat themselves!!!!

Belichick was exactly right in that our team has many good players and that overall we are disciplined and tough. I guarantee you that if he were coaching the same players, our players, we'd be Super Bowl contenders without the slightest doubt. The difference between Beli and Sparano is like the difference between a fledgling disciple and a guru/master. Our very philosophy of "play not to lose" has mostly ended up in causing us to lose many games. We need an ATTACKING offense that can be versatile to game situations. Henning's play calling is a real detriment to the success of this team. Henne can't and probably will never be able to come near the skill level of Brady. You would think after so much exposure to Brady that Henne would have learned a lot by watching but evidently the learning curve is too steep for the brain challenged Henne. The bottom line is Sparano and Henning's philosophy, which has us doomed from the start, our lack of a real QB and the atrocious play calling are precisely what's holding us back. Change the coaches, get a real QB and a deep threat receiver to stretch the field and we are in the Bowl, not the slightest doubt!

To comment on the music playing as Henning packs up his playbook (all 2 pages) and the rest of his belongings: it'll be the sad walking away music (from the Incredible Hulk tv shows)

Dumping Sparano for Cowher would really make no sense. Cowher didn't get to the playoffs his FIRST YEAR, Sparano did. We're all disappointed the 3 year project didn't work out as hoped, but trading it for a 14 year project with a coach with a very similar philosophy would be senseless. Remember all the years the Steelers didn't even have a QB--Randel El messing around back there. Cowher didn't care. hell punt on 3d down, play defense. We're better off with Sparano. I hope he stays.

Whenever another coach talks about Miami they always talk about how tough and disciplined the team is. Thats how I would want my coach to build a team. In the past miami's teams didn't have toughest or discipline and it showed when they got beat bad week after week. Miami has been in almost every game this year but with injuries, missed interceptions, and poor special teams they lost games. If they stay the course with a tough hard working attitude towards competing they should continue to improve. 7-8 so far this year with tough road wins which show the character of this team. Once they fix some areas on the team and coaching they will have oppurtunity for a big turn around, say maybe 12-4 next year.

I actually have a lot of respect for Bill Belicheck... always have. He is extremely smart and even if the team did cheat back in the day he handled it very well. I doubt it had little to do with him anyways. I just wish that Tony would take a few lessons from him in how to speak to people in a clear legible manner so that his audience doesn't mistake him for a fool/ tard.

db, i don't think Brown's best days are past him... Ricky is still decent but i agree could use a small versatile speed back. But first off the problem starts with the interior O line. Berger played alright in pass but isn't a good Run blocker. need to open up holes if your trying to run between the tackles otherwise get a back quick/ fast enough to get outside

A little off topic but this keeps reverberating in my head. During last weeks game when Miami was up by 10 with around 8 minutes left one of the announcers said Henne is use to big game pressure, he played at Michigan in front of huge crowds, then proceeded to say he went 0-4 against there biggest rival, Ohio State. All I could think is 0-4, Henne is a choke artist. And then about 2 seconds later Henne throws a pick 6 and Miami was only up by 3 with plenty of time left and I knew they would lose, especially after the epihpany that Henne was indeed a choke artist. Trade him and install a bionic arm on Pennington.


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