Bill Belichick's biggest gripe with Sunday's loss to the Seattle Seahawks was that the Patriots didn't make the play they needed to make, on both sides of the ball.
In the end, he said in a conference call on Monday, it came down to execution and situational awareness. And when the execution isn't there, that makes the possessions and plays late in a game that much more important.
"Then it really becomes an awareness thing, and certainly an execution thing," said Belichick. "How well can you execute that one, two, however many plays it is, that now determine the outcome of the game."
The outcome of Sunday's game in Seattle came on Russell Wilson's 46-yard bomb to Sidney Rice, deep down the middle of the field. The touchdown gave the Seahawks a 24-23 lead after the extra point, and all eyes were on rookie safeties Tavon Wilson and Nate Ebner, who were beat down the field by Rice.
After watching the tape, Belichick admitted that the pass rush and the coverage could have ben better on that play. He even believed his defense was set up well enough to have enough bodies back there in the secondary. But the execution that Belichick spoke of on Monday, also had to do with the execution of the coaching staff, teaching their rookies how to properly execute on the field in those coverages.
"I mean, look, I'm not trying to put the blame on the players or anything like that," said Belichick. "I don't think there was anything wrong with the call. I think we could have played it better, which includes coaching it to be played better. So I think there's a responsibility on the coaching end . . . The execution, that's part of the coaching's fault as well."