Bill Belichick: Patriots “nowhere close to where we need to be”

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Patriots quarterback Tom Brady looked as good as ever in Friday night’s preseason game against the Buccaneers. So Patriots coach Bill Belichick was probably in a great mood after the game, gushing about how wonderful his team is, right?

Not quite.

“Our team is still in a growing stage,” Belichick said after the game. “We have a lot of work to do. We’re nowhere close to where we need to be for the opener or for the 16-game regular season schedule. We have a lot of work to do. We’re going to stay at it. It’s not over by any means. We’re not anywhere close to where we need to be. Training camp is not over. Let me make that perfectly clear.”

OK, that’s perfectly clear. The Patriots have looked pretty good through two preseason games, but that’s a long, long way from the point where Belichick would be willing to celebrate.

Belichick is about five and a half months from the point where he would be willing to celebrate.