After Sunday’s 22-12 loss to the Dolphins officially ended the Patriots’ hopes of extending the team’s 11-year run of consecutive postseason appearances, Bill Belichick offered a characteristically blunt assessment.
“We didn’t do anything well enough to win the game,” Belichick said of his team.
When asked about the playoff streak ending, he again kept the focus on the loss in Miami.
“Disappointed, but we didn’t deserve to win today,” Belichick responded.
The standout statistic for the Dolphins on the day was the team’s overwhelming success running the ball. Miami totaled 250 rushing yards as the Patriots were unable to find an answer.
“I have to coach better, we have to play better, we have to tackle better, a combination of all of those things,” Belichick said of the run defense.
Asked follow-up questions about that particular facet of the Patriots’ defense, the longtime New England coach eschewed details and reiterated the fundamentals.
“All the things I just said, say them again, it’s all the same things,” Belichick added.
Absent success on offense, the Patriots did manage to put the ball deep in Dolphins territory on several occasions. Yet seemingly each time, Miami rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (and his running backs) were able to put together lengthy drives.
“We didn’t do a good job in those situations,” Belichick acknowledged. “We got the field position, didn’t keep it, and couldn’t get the ball back to the offense in good field position. Put them in a long field too many times, so that all certainly contributed to the performance of the day.”
Asked about the final failed fourth down attempt — and if he thought about a field goal given the 10-point deficit — Belichick offered a straightforward response.
“Yeah we thought about it,” Belichick admitted. “It was 4th and 2, so [we were] still going to need a touchdown at some point, so tried to pick it up on 4th and 2 but we didn’t.”
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