Bill Belichick: It was pretty even, two big plays skewed the game

New England Patriots v Miami Dolphins
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When the Patriots were ruling the AFC East, they made a habit of coming up with big plays in big moments to swing games in their favor.

That wasn’t the way things went on Sunday, however. The Dolphins returned a fumble for a touchdown and scored on a fourth down pass to Jaylen Waddle late in the first half on their way to a 20-7 win over their divisional rivals.

In his postgame press conference, Belichick pointed to those two plays as ones that swung things in Miami’s favor.

“Well, it’s obviously a disappointing start here. It was really a pretty even game. Two big plays, 14 points, really skewed the game,” Belichick said.

Some will nitpick Belichick boiling the game down to two plays, but a team that prized itself on always making them should know better than any other that the line between winning and losing can be a very thin one. They’ll need to find a way to be on the other side of it to avoid more days like Sunday and finding a way to score more than seven points would be a good place to start.

71 responses to “Bill Belichick: It was pretty even, two big plays skewed the game

  1. They aren’t going to win many games scoring 7 points a game even if the other team doesn’t score big plays.

    They really should think about hiring someone to coach the offense.

  2. Outplayed, outcoached. Doesn’t help when your most effective WR is parked on the bench for no reason.

  3. Ya and other than the shooting the play President Lincoln went to was pretty good. Hey Bill, that game was anything but even.

  4. The Patriots Dynasty is over. This was a horrible beatdown from a not very good team. It was way more than just 2 plays coach they looked horrible and lost the whole game.

  5. Not to mention Patker’s shoulder pad almost coming out of his jersey in the end zone because of a blatant PI not called. Goodell is still up to his old tricks.

    “NFL cracking down on illegal contact”…..Yeah, right.

    I can’t think of one 50/50 play that went NEs way and they were still in it to start the 4th.

    Nice job on Hill/Gesecki, and Waddle except for that 1 play before half.

    The offense needs to pick it up, period.

  6. So, BB is saying if the Dolphins hadn’t played their defense the game would have been closer? That doesn’t make sense to me. A NE poster assured us all that Mac was going to ‘carve up’ the Dolphin secondary. Didn’t BB know that?

  7. Bill Belichik making excuses and playing spin doctor. Now we know the mojo has completely left the building. Kraft must be gnashing with regret choosing Bill over the real pillar of their dynasty.

  8. Obviously we can all criticize as much as we want but one thing I believe, sometime’s Bill Belichick’s stubbornness get the best of him. I don’t think there’s a chance in the world he replaces Patricia.
    As I believe the two plays that hurt NE the most today was the hit on MJ in Patriots territory that resulted in a fumble and a dolphin recovery TD. And the interception by Miami in their end zone during the Patriots first possession in the first quarter. The play caller had no business calling that pass in the end zone. They had marched down the field on dinks and dunks and running plays and they were very effective, the Dolphins couldn’t stop them, then somebody with NE calls for a risky pass play. And to me it was basically a floater style pass to boot. That offensive series could easily have been and should have been a TD for the Pats. It might have changed the complete outcome of the first half. Miami was opportunist and NE simply beat themselves. They have a hell of a lot of work to do if they want to have a chance of being Pittsburgh.

  9. After the last 20 years – Pats fans complaining about officiating is, well, just a bit ironic.

  10. Is Patriot fan prepared for the abrupt end?
    🎵Turn out the lights, the party’s overr🎵

  11. Lol. But I thought the dolphins didn’t know what to practice?
    _________________
    They worked on their victory lap.

  12. I’m more concerned about TB6. He’s probably curled up in the fetal position somewhere. Lol

  13. There is no way to put a positive spin on this game. The Pats stink,and Miami continues to be a house of horrors for them.

  14. At least it wasn’t the heat & the humidity, because they got “acclimated”. Right, Bill?

  15. Did BB watch the game? His team got into the red zone one time. He was out coached. Maybe this is a sign of early onset dementia. Maybe that’s why Matt Patricia is calling plays. The Fins looked out of sorts on defense multiple times yet your team could only muster 7. I don’t think Bills career will end with him riding into the sunset. I can see why they traded Stidham. They didn’t want Mac looking over his shoulder lol.

  16. touchback6 says:
    September 11, 2022 at 5:52 pm
    Not to mention Patker’s shoulder pad almost coming out of his jersey in the end zone because of a blatant PI not called. Goodell is still up to his old tricks.

    “NFL cracking down on illegal contact”…..Yeah, right.

    I can’t think of one 50/50 play that went NEs way and they were still in it to start the 4th.

    Nice job on Hill/Gesecki, and Waddle except for that 1 play before half.

    The offense needs to pick it up, period.

    ———————

    Keep trying to make excuses, little guy. We’re here for you to amuse us with your nonsensical takes.

  17. Bill is on to Pittsburg. He is flying the team in early on Tuesday so they can get accustomed to the cloudy weather.

  18. Had the Dolphins showed up ready to play, they would have won by at least 23 points. Can you guys imagine just how good the Steelers will look against them next week? Mike Tomlin has won with several different quarterbacks over the years. As for Belichick, he hasn’t.

  19. I guess when your offense can only manage one touchdown, any score by the opposing team is considered a “big play”!!!!

  20. This was a good time for one of Bill’s non-verbal press conferences. Instead, he spewed nonsense.

  21. The only reason the Patriots made the playoffs last year was thanks to the weaknesses of their opponents and the strengths of their defense. People forget that the win-streak that they went on that people were giving Bill credit for, that was the same win-streak that the Dolphins went on against pretty much the same opponents. And the Dolphins were very flawed…just like the Patriots.

  22. That was exactly my perception….a few plays altered the game radically. Parker not elevating for the TD in the end zone led to a pick (-7), Jones getting strip sacked near his own goal line (-7, Henry let the blitzing corner go past him to Mac’s blind side) and the 4th and 1 TD (-7), which they may not have tried were it not for the other two plays.

    HOWEVER, the other thought I had in tandem is (as you said Josh) that they ALWAYS made these plays before. It may be a learning situation, BUT, this has been the case for the last two seasons against good teams. When the Patriots have to have a play, more often than not, they can’t make it. You can only out-scheme the other guys so much. They have a scheme too, and if your athletes can’t out-athlete their athletes in big moments, life in the NFL gets rough. Mac’s arm isn’t going to make up for a lack of separation, particularly on deep balls. There aren’t going to be any 45 yard frozen ropes.

    It’s way early here, and I went into the season knowing 0-4 is a distinct possibility before hitting a stretch where they can right the ship and then see what they have. So I’m not saying they can’t have a successful season, but this has been a bit of an ongoing issue, and if McDaniels, a long time seasoned coordinator with this team couldn’t overcome it, I have my doubts about any coaches that are new to coordinating an offense being any better. They ran the ball very well at times. Davante Parker was a no show, and watching hi fail to elevate for that catch in the end zone made his “jump balls are 80/20 for me” training camp comment ring hollow. At least he attracts the other teams best Db. Benching Kendrick Bourne for the first half (they ran a lot of 2 TE sets) may have been a mistake. Hopefully it’s not discipline related. They need playmakers.

    Even with Tyreek Hill, this Dolphin offense is more of a Death By A Thousand Cuts offense, similar to past offenses in Miami with Tua. As is also often the case, Tua offered up the ball for turnovers on 4 or more occasions but they always seem to avoid the turnover. Even on the fumble, what the heck was the Center doing BEHIND Tua? It resulted in a very fortunate recovery at a critical juncture. I doubt Tua can continue to do that and be successful. Some throws were like….wtf? But hey, it doesn’t matter when you win the game. Tua has an uncanny ability to get out of trouble, even if he creates it himself. Congratulations to the Dolphins. It’s also Game 1 for them, so they should also get better, but they also have things they need to address. We’ll see you on New Years Day, hopefully with something to play for, and lots of snow.

  23. It’s the first game of the season, let the Belichick haters (including the media due to his not catering to them) and those with envy of his 6 Super Bowl win record pile on.
    As I recall it wasn’t that many years ago when on opening night the KC Chiefs smoked the Patriots badly with Tom Brady as QB. In fact the brilliant media and fans asked if Brady would be benched and that evoked BB saying “we are on to Cincinnati” and later winning the Super Bowl that year. In that particular Chiefs game, the Pats were clearly dominated. In this Miami game, the Dolphins won a strip sack TD, a 4th down TD that most seasoned coaches would not have attempted though the Dolphins coach is a genius since it worked. And also a definite pass interference in the end zone call was missed by the blind referees that then awarded the Dolphins an interception instead of a Pat’s first down on the Fins 1 yard line. Tua was very average, and if anything happens to one of the two Dolphins speedy receivers, they will be in big trouble. I think Brady is the GOAT, but so is BB- together they were terrific. So before media and fans continue to try to bury the best coach in
    NFL history (considering free agency), let’s wait for some more games to be played.

  24. carloswlassiter says:
    September 11, 2022 at 5:42 pm
    Outplayed, outcoached. Doesn’t help when your most effective WR is parked on the bench for no reason.

    ===========
    How effective was he in the preseason and camp ? Maybe he fell short. Maybe he was not 100%.

  25. Bill the coach is still very good. However, they desperately need a GM. Hes crippled himself with questionable roster decisions and drafting.

  26. Belichick’s assessment is accurate and consistent with what he often says about games they win. One or two plays is often the difference in a game. That doesn’t mean Bill thinks they should have won or that they don’t have plenty to work on.

    You don’t win many games with a minus 3 turnover margin but it’s not like they didn’t have opportunities for takeaways. They didn’t make the plays.

    The fact is they never put the game at risk for the Dolphins and that’s unacceptable. Miami earned the win.

    It wasn’t so much bad play calling. It was how rushed Mac was at the line of scrimmage. They didn’t put him in a comfortable position nor did the give him time to assess the defensive alignment. They need to let him have more control over the offense. They have to play Bourne.

    I thought the D played relatively well (huge exception was the big TD before the half) but they gave up too many 3rd down plays to extend drives, especially on short passes to backs.

  27. Mac Jones tries hard, is very smart and is a good teamate. He just doesn’t have an NFL arm. Brady used to throw lasers on those sideline outs. In the 2nd quarter a Dolphins DB deflected a Jones sideline floater while trailing the play by 6 yrds, Not good enough,

    Although I have to say, the Dolphins, while deserving winners, are going nowhere with Tua either. Don’t care what his stats are, he’s terrible. Wanna draft Alabama guys> Stay away from the QBs.

  28. This was a good time for one of Bill’s non-verbal press conferences. Instead he spewed nonsense.

  29. touchback6 says:
    September 11, 2022 at 5:52 pm
    Not to mention Patker’s shoulder pad almost coming out of his jersey in the end zone because of a blatant PI not called. Goodell is still up to his old tricks.

    ———————

    So award us that TD and we still would have lost. Let it go please.

  30. This I isn’t aging well

    touchback6 says:
    September 7, 2022 at 9:29 am
    Miami still not knowing what to practice. Love the approach from BB.
    Steals a game from Miami on the road early, confuses Pitt and Balt, while adding a layer of an offense for Mac to use.
    Mac is the OC.
    BB is doing it right under the media’s noses and they can’t figure it out

  31. Football says:
    September 11, 2022 at 7:04 pm
    touchback6 says:
    September 11, 2022 at 5:52 pm
    Not to mention Patker’s shoulder pad almost coming out of his jersey in the end zone because of a blatant PI not called. Goodell is still up to his old tricks.
    —————
    Arriving one more day early to practice in Miami would have done the trick, too.

    LOL!

  32. Everyone who knows anything about football knows the patriots roster is terrible and that all belichick did was ride Brady’s coattails and cheat repeatedly. As soon as Brady ditched them this joke organization was completely exposed.

    The NFL has entered a Golden Age with Josh Allen, the new Tom Brady, competing for Super Bowls with Patrick Mahomes year after year, while the patriots are where they belong, the NFLs bottom feeders whose season is over before it even begins, who will never be relevant for more than a decade.

    It’s exactly what the patriots fans deserve for the way they all turned their back on Tom Brady, without whom the patriots are forever what they are right now – disgraced, irrelevant, cheating losers.

  33. That’s right. The Bills have already won 2 Super Bowls. 4 more annd they catch the Pats Totally wipes out that 0-4. They won their 1rst SBowl against the Pats in the Divisional Round last year, before losing the next week. Then they won their 2nd against the Rams in week 1. What a team. Who can stop them now? Just ask their fans. So weak.

  34. Ted, Brady threw a sideline out in the first series of the LA Rams Super Bowl and was picked. I agree that pass by Mac was poor but it was the execution more than his arm strength.

    I want to see Mac throwing to Myers, Bourne and Henry. Bill seems to want get Smith, Agholor and Parker the ball. Why can Tua get 1st downs on check downs to backs but not the Pats?

    Let’s give it a few games.

    You are right about Tua. He’s a check down specialist but he has two great receivers.

  35. Pretty close? Sloppy play, bad offensive play-calls, unnecessary penalties… This team is just bad. And it’s NOT due to lack of talent. The coaching staff is flat out bad and the preparation is poor. It is painful to watch what this team has devolved into without Brady’s leadership.

  36. patsfan4lifedynasty says:
    September 11, 2022 at 6:46 pm

    Let the Bailey Zappe era begin

    LOL! Zappe played against some of the worst college teams and is not ready for NFL. But OK.. let him be your savior after Mac Jones, Stidham, Brissett, Garapollo, Newton and Hoyer. Keep dreaming. You got a beat down. The only reason it was not worse is the the Dolphins played average on Offense. The turnovers were forced by a superior Defense. Make plans to sell your bandwagon Patriots gear while you still can!

  37. nhpats2011 says:
    September 11, 2022 at 7:24 pm
    This I isn’t aging well

    touchback6 says:
    September 7, 2022 at 9:29 am
    Miami still not knowing what to practice. Love the approach from BB.
    Steals a game from Miami on the road early, confuses Pitt and Balt, while adding a layer of an offense for Mac to use.
    Mac is the OC.
    BB is doing it right under the media’s noses and they can’t figure it out

    ———

    This is what happens when you post nonsense. People laugh or bet the opposite and become rich.

  38. Respect everyone’s opinion, but when Brady threw that pick, the WR wasn’t open. With Jones, the WR was WIDE open. That DB should not have had a chance. Ever had a sideline seat at an NFL game? Those 40/50 mph fastballs are ridiculous, if the QB has an arm. Sorry, Jones can’t make that throw.

    Don’t give me Agholor. He’s just cashing checks. At least JSmith tries. This isn’t a knee jerk reaction. I’ve been saying the Pats are in trouble for months. They’re gonna start 0-4. and then the Bruins and Celts start. Wish there was reason for optomism. Just can’t find one.

  39. Packers blown out, Bengals lost, San Francisco lost, Titans lost, Vegas lost, and Colts got tied by Texans.

    Everyone of those teams were expected to make playoffs. A little early in the season to write them or the Patriots off.

  40. ” They’re gonna start 0-4. and then the Bruins and Celts start.”
    _________________

    Well, the Bruins are old, and the Celtics have a star who can’t close.

    But sure. Other than that.

  41. Buffalo has no teams. Just another 8 months of crying when the Bills choke again. Celts and Bruins are both Championship contenders. Check any Power Rankings.

    What happened to the Yankees?

  42. “What happened to the Yankees?”
    ______________________

    5.5 game lead in the east, and will coast the the playoffs as they get their stars back from injury.

    Maybe they can beat the Red Sox this year in the playoffs. Oh, wait….

  43. Oh, my. The last time I heard so much crying in one room, it was at the hospital maternity ward. Good Lord. “They lost to a bad team”. OK, then. Yep, keep rehearsing that line.

  44. Maybe the Yanks can beat the Red Sox in the Playoffs? It would be the 1rst time in the 21rst century.

  45. As a Dolphins fan,not impressed with having the ball all day given to us by the defense and coming away with 20 points. 7 of which were scored by the defense. Tua isn’t breaking down defenses and our o-line is no better than last year I did not see a Miami team ready to make the playoffs.

  46. Pats and Bills fans should stop sniping at each other. We should all unite in how hilariously wrong TB6 is… yet again.

  47. This is the new reality in New England. The Patriots are a bad team now and we need to accept it. It’s the Bill’s division. We had our time,but it’s done.

  48. Turnovers decided the game the Pat’s wouldn’t have beat anyone playing like that. The Good news is its week 1 and their is alot of football to be played before anything is decided.

  49. Someone needs to send out a search party for Bill Belichick. Pre-2021 Belichick would never have been satisfied with the way the team played, even if they’d won.

  50. tedmurph says:
    September 11, 2022 at 8:38 pm
    Buffalo has no teams. Just another 8 months of crying when the Bills choke again. Celts and Bruins are both Championship contenders. Check any Power Rankings.

    What happened to the Yankees?

    ——————————-

    In what world are the Bruins Championship contenders? They’re maybe a 50/50 bet to even make the playoffs. And the Red Sox are officially in the cellar of the AL East and will continue to be so for many years to come – the Orioles have completely lapped him now.

  51. So Chris Simms was talking an awful lot about how much better Mac Jones is than Tua. I think it is pretty obvious that even though Tua was not at his best (first game, all new system & players), he still played way better than Mac Jones. Jones looked awful. Time to backpedal Chris. Even your father realizes Tua’s potential and how he has been hindered his first 2 seasons.

  52. Before the season began, I said the Pats would start 0-4 maybe 1-3. Feels more like 0-4 without the maybe.

  53. It feels strange saying this after these last 20 years, but Buffalo is gonna demolish this team. The pats do not look good…at all.

  54. Belichick is already older than Tom Landry and Don Shula were when they retired, and the last few years of their reigns were ugly. Most 70 year old men lack stamina to work 12 hour days, 7 days per week, as NFL coaches do. Add to that his other front-office responsibilities, and is it any wonder that his coaching and executive skills have waned? Because he has “pelts on the wall”, it will take a 1-16 or 3-14 season to get Kraft to replace him, but that day is coming, sooner than you think. And this is a life-long Patriots fan talking.

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