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Bill Belichick press conference: Chiefs

Bill Belichick press conference: Chiefs

BILL BELICHICK

Belichick is prepping for Dolphins

Belichick is Moving on to the conference title game

BB: Well first of all it’s great to win today. I’m really proud of our team. We’ve kind of been battling along here for a few weeks and I thought we had a real good two weeks of preparation – not that we did very much last week on the field but in our meetings and our walkthroughs, just going over the things we went over I think it helped make us a better team. And then this week of practice was probably one of our best weeks ever in terms of focus and concentration, everybody being alert and on top of it. I thought we played hard today. Kansas City is a good football team. You’ve got to give Coach [Andy] Reid and his staff and that team a lot of credit. They’re tough, they’re resilient. They’re going to battle you all the way to the last minute, last second, which they did today. And I have all the respect in the world for Andy and the Kansas City Chiefs. I thought we had a good day. We got contributions in all phases of the game. Tom [Brady] was really sharp. Getting the ball in the end zone early was huge. Defensively, our red-area defense was big early in the game, so those were some key stops for us. Danny [Amendola’s] punt return set up a field goal, which that ended up being some important points. I thought our offensive line did a good job. That’s a good front. Tom really had a pretty clean day back there. He did a good job of getting the ball out, the receivers were open. Defensively I thought we could have obviously played better on third down. We had a lot of chances to get off the field and we just couldn’t do it, but at the same time you’ve got to give credit to Kansas City. They’re well coached. They’ve got a good quarterback. They’ve got good receivers. They’ve got a good tight end. So they’re not the easiest team to handle there. That’s something we would have liked to have done better today. That being said, it’s great to move on to the AFC Championship Game. It’s always an honor to be a part of that game. We’re excited about that. We’ll look forward to whoever that opponent is and get to work on them, try to have a good week and go out there and play our best game next Sunday.
Q: What did you think of the play of the offensive line?
BB: Again, I think the offensive line did a great job. The receivers did an excellent job of getting open and getting separation. Tom got the ball out quickly, so all that worked together. In that first drive, they came after us at least three times, maybe four, and we made plays on all those. We had a third-down conversion, hit James White out in the flat for an easy 20 yards. Amendola – that was another probably easy 20 yards or something like that, whatever it was. They came after us and we hit them pretty good on those, and then that really slowed it down for a while. We didn’t see a lot of pressures. It was a lot of four-man rush, other than when they were in some of their five-down looks, but those were relatively easy to identify. So we didn’t see after that first drive a whole lot of pressure, but I thought again those are good pass rushers on the edge there – [Tamba] Hali and [Dee] Ford, [Justin] Houston when he played, big guys inside, so I thought we held up to them pretty good. A big part of that also was the quarterback and receivers being able to get the ball out on time and make some yards after the catch, which Rob [Gronkowski] did, James White did, Danny, Julian, so it was a good team effort in the passing game. The offensive line had a big challenge. I don’t know how many times they threw the ball but it was most all of them, I know that. They pass blocked well.
Q: Can you reflect on how special it is to go to five straight AFC Championship games?
BB: It’s a real credit to the players. I think that’s number one. Those guys, we demand a lot out of them. This is a hard place to play. It’s from the first day of spring OTAs all the way through training camp all the way through meetings. We’re over 100 practices now this year. That doesn’t count the walkthroughs and the meetings and everything else. Those are just the actual practice practices. You know it’s definitely a grind, but they come in here, like this group, and I’ve said this the last couple of years, too, these guys come in here every day, their pencils are sharpened, they’re sitting right there in those seats, they’re ready to go, they’re attentive, they want to learn, they want to know how to get better, they want to compete and they just do that on a daily basis. That’s been week after week and year after year. It’s really a great credit to those guys. We have some great competitors on our team – obviously Brady and Edelman and Gronkowski and [Sebastian] Vollmer and [Patrick] Chung and [Devin] McCourty, [Dont’a] Hightower, [Jamie] Collins, Chandler [Jones], those guys on the other side of the ball, too, Stephen Gostkowski. Those guys, you just can’t say enough about them. [Rob] Ninkovich, I mean you just go right down the line. The credit goes to them. It’s a tough league. It’s tough to go out and play good every week, especially when you’ve got a target. Everybody is trying to knock us off, as they should be, and we’ve just got to stand up and compete every week. The players do a great job here, they really do. I’m really fortunate to have that group. And the assistant coaches, you can’t say enough great things. I thought Josh [McDaniels] and the offensive staff did a tremendous job this week game planning and play calling. Josh was magnificent. I thought he really had everything dialed in. Pretty much everything he called it came out the way we thought it would. As we were breaking the huddle, we could already see we had what we wanted and Tom and the offense executed it perfectly. The staff did a really good job, as they usually do. Look, these guys work hard here. The coaches work hard, the players work hard, and it’s very gratifying to see those kinds of results pay off for all the hard work. It’s what we do, it’s what we’re here for is to win.

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