‘We need to do everything better’: Bill Belichick’s takeaway from the Patriots’ second straight loss was clear

"We just have to do a better job."

Patriots coach Bill Belichick was a man of few words following his team’s 26-10 loss to former defensive coordinator Matt Patricia and the Detroit Lions Sunday night.

“The Lions did everything a lot better than we did tonight, so give them credit,” Belichick said. “We just didn’t do anything well enough to give ourselves a chance to win. Similar situation to last week: Got behind early, played from behind, [and] just weren’t able to make it up. So, we’re going to have to work our way out of it.”

The Patriots trailed from kick-off, finding themselves behind by two scores before halftime for the second week in a row.

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What can the team do about the slow starts?

“We’ll have to work at it,” Belichick said. “Work harder.”

Belichick was asked about several aspects of New England’s game, from the overall execution by the defense to specific plays (e.g. Tom Brady’s intentional grounding penalty in the fourth quarter) to the plethora of injuries (e.g. Trey Flowers, Patrick Chung, Eric Rowe), but his answers were very much the same.

What does the team have to do to play better defense?

“Everything. We just have to do a better job.”

Were injuries a factor in the team’s performance?

“I think they clearly outplayed us and out-coached us today.”

What prompted the decision to rotate cornerbacks J.C. Jackson and Jason McCourty in the second quarter?

“We couldn’t execute anything. We didn’t execute anything very well.”

Were the issues today personnel-based or execution-based?

“I’ll have to look at the film.”

Belichick eventually issued a blanket statement about the loss:

“I’ve said this multiple times, I’ll say it again, ‘We need to do everything better.’ Play better, coach better, execute better in all three phases of the game. Whatever one you want to bring up, the answer is all the same. None of it has been good enough.”

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With Sunday’s defeat, the Patriots drop to 1-2 for just the third time in the Belichick-Brady era. Following the slow start to the season, Belichick said he has no specific message for the team and didn’t seem overly concerned about their record.

“I don’t think anyone can clinch a playoff spot today,” he said. “I don’t think anyone is eliminated today.”

Bill Belichick
Bill Belichick addresses the media after the Patriots’ loss against the Detroit Lions. —AP Photo/Rick Osentoski
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