Belichick laments reduced practice time during preseason

Belichick laments reduced practice time during preseason
August 16, 2012, 6:01 pm
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FOXBORO -- As training camp winds down, so too does Patriots practice time.

New England's final three exhibition games will be played over a 10-day period, meaning they're not afforded much in the way of teaching moments.

"The unusual thing about this situation is just our inability to actually install everything, actually put in plays or cover things," Bill Belichick said Thursday. "This week is pretty much about it. I think we'll have good practices next week against Tampa like we did against New Orleans and the preseason games will be beneficial to us.

"But in terms of actually being able to go out there and talk about something in the morning, walk through it, practice it in the afternoon, watch the film at night, correct it, go through the some of the little things that didn't come up or did come up or go over again or fine tune that's what we lose. After this, this is it."

The Patriots will practice tomorrow and begin to prepare for their exhibition game Monday against the Eagles. The next day, the team travels to Tampa Bay for the first of two joint practices before their exhibition game on Friday. Only two days separates that game from their final preseason game against the Giants. Before the preseason finale, Belichick must decide on his 75-man roster.

The coach was asked about how difficult the condensed schedule makes player evaluation.

"This certainly isn't the ideal way to set it up," said Belichick, who will make a second round of cuts to get to a 53-man roster by Aug. 31. "But we'll do the best that we can with the opportunities that we have."

Belichick said that during the preseason his team will prepare for their upcoming opponent for about one third of the amount of time they would normally spend game-planning another team during the regular season. At this point in the season, they are more worried about themselves than anyone else. And with limited practice time, it means they have to be especially vigilant to stay on course and learn what they need to learn before the start of the regular season.

"We're just trying to stay on schedule, get things covered that we're going to need to do during the season," Belichick said. "Maybe they'll come up in the preseason games, maybe they won't but we'll have to be ready for them sooner or later so that's where we're at."