Patriots coach Bill Belichick spoke in the clearest of terms in analyzing his team’s offense after yesterday’s 20-17 overtime loss to Denver.
“Just collectively as an offensive unit, we’re just not consistently doing things as well as we need to do them,” Belichick said. “All the way across the board. It’s not one position, it’s not one player. It’s not one particular type of play. We’re just not as efficient and as precise as we need to be. There’s no other way to put it.”
It was night and day for the Pats’ offense from the first half to the second. All of their 17 points came before halftime. So did their five first downs. They didn’t find the red zone at all in the second half, and after completing 14-of-19 passes in the first half, Tom Brady was 5-of-14 in the second.
“We didn’t get that much production at all in the second half: 0-for-6 on third down, no points,” Belichick said. “We didn’t do well.”
And still they had a chance to win it in regulation, after forcing a Denver three-and-out and getting the ball back at their own 30-yard line with 2:27. But a Vonnie Holliday sack and a Tom Brady fumble killed the opportunity.
“We had our chances, we just didn’t take advantage of them,” Belichick said. “We’ve got to be more productive, got to make more plays, got to make them at the right time, got to make them in critical situations.”
More from Belichick:
Jerod Mayo’s return: “He’s a good player. No doubt about it. Hadn’t played in a few weeks. And like any player, the only way to get through that is to play. He made some plays and there’s some things that I’m sure he’ll do better next time around.”
Pass rush: “I think we’ve had our moments. Yesterday was a lot of quick passing, a lot of short passing game. There wasn’t a lot of time when he was standing back there holding the ball. There were times when we were getting to him but the ball was out of there. Pass defense is all inter-related. It’s all about the timing of the coordination between the coverage and the rush. So if the receivers are covered and the quarterback has to hold the ball, then your pass rush has a chance to get there. If they’re not covered, then it doesn’t make any difference, they don’t have to block anybody, the ball’s already gone. It’s all about timing.”
Timing in the passing game: “In skill positions, you’re always working on timing. You’re doing that every year, every team, every quarterback, every receiver … It’s an ongoing process. It’s everybody, it’s the receivers, it’s the tight ends, it’s the back, it’s the quarterback … We need to do a better job on that all around. That’s all 11 guys out there on the field. It’s not just one man in the passing game. It’s not just one man on defense. It’s all 11. And it’s coaching, too. We can do a better job with that too, the design and the execution.”
Myron Pryor: “Myron’s coming along. I think just being back these last couple of weeks has helped him. He missed a few weeks there at the end of the preseason/start of the regular season. He came back and he played a little bit, but now as he’s gotten more reps in practice and kind of built on some of the game experiences and corrections, and gone back out the next week, I think he’s starting to show a jump in his improvement.”