Belichick: Brady is a difficult player to coach


Belichick: Brady is a difficult player to coach

By Tom E. Curran Patriots Insider Follow @tomecurran
FOXBORO -- Bill Belichick sat down with Mike Lombardi of the NFL Network this week to talk about the upcoming season.

The NFLN folks were good enough to forward over a pair of Brady-related quotes from the interview which will air on NFL GameDay Morning this Sunday at 9:00 AM ET.

Lombardi asked Belichick about Brady's comment earlier this year that he hadn't gotten over the loss to the Jets in the 2010 postseason.

Im not sure how many losses Ive ever gotten over," Belichick replied. "I remember a couple of games I lost in high school and Im still not over those losses either. When you put a lot into the game, the losses stay with you. Thats part of sports. You can never get them back, but it just drives you a little harder next time.

Having been in a losing Patriots locker room and seeing how visibly angry Belichick can be, that's not hard to believe.

After the 2005 playoff loss to Denver, I remember clearly him walking through the locker room, his face a mask of focused, quiet anger. You saw it in 2006 after the AFC Championship loss to the Colts in his postgame interview. You saw it again after Super Bowl 42. Belichick empties his soul into these games -- which may not be the healthiest approach -- and the convalescence from a season-ending loss is ongoing.

Lombardi asked Belichick about working 1-on-1 with Brady as was seen in "Bill Belichick: A Football Life."

"Tom and I get together every week and talk about the preparation for the team were playing," Belichick explained. "Hes a tough player to coach because hes so well prepared; hes seen all of the games, hes seen all of the plays. You cant walk into a meeting with Tom Brady and only have watched half of the film because hell bring up things that hes seen in other games. You dont want to be sitting there saying I didnt watch this, or I didnt watch that.

In a story I did for prior to the 2009 season, Belichick told me the same thing but elaborated a bit more.

"You have to be better prepared than he is because he sets such a high standard with his preparation and his level of understanding, Belichick told me. As a coach, youre competing with that, trying to exceed that or else, what are you doing (for him)?

You dont want to go into a meeting with him and say, Well, this team didnt hit a lot of outcuts against (this defense). Hell turn around and say, Well, in the Green Bay game last year they did. They hit five of them. Youll want to have seen that game and make sure you know what happened so that hes not telling you what happened when you should be telling him what happened.

Should be an interesting watch.

Tom E. Curran can be reached at Follow Tom on Twitter at http:twitter.comtomecurran

Green has big game as Bengals dominate Dolphins 22-7


Green has big game as Bengals dominate Dolphins 22-7

CINCINNATI -- For most of the game, A.J. Green piled up more yards than the entire Miami Dolphins offense in a virtuoso performance. As an encore, he thrilled the crowd by juggling some Florida citrus.

The Bengals receiver followed his disappointing game with a dominating one - 173 yards and a touchdown - and a Cincinnati defense that was inspired by Vontaze Burfict's return clamped down on the Dolphins for a 22-7 victory Thursday night.

The Bengals (2-2) rebounded from a 29-17 home loss to Denver on Sunday with a solid all-around game against a depleted team.

Green led the way, beating the Dolphins (1-3) on every type of route . He was upset with himself after he dropped a pivotal third-down pass and failed to make an impact against the Broncos.

"I hold myself to a very high standard," said Green, who had 10 catches. "I know what I'm capable of. Last week I didn't perform to that level. I had to refocus on a short week."

During the first three quarters, Green had 166 yards on catches while Miami had 152 total yards. The Bengals' season-long problem of stalling out near the goal line forced them to settle for Mike Nugent's season-high five field goals.

Afterward, Green and Andy Dalton appeared on the postgame show, and the receiver entertained the dozens of Bengals fans who stayed around by smoothly juggling three oranges at the interview desk.

"Any time he was one-on-one, he was able to make the play," Dalton said.

The Dolphins were missing four starting offensive linemen, two linebackers, running back Arian Foster and tight end Jordan Cameron. They had one big play - Ryan Tannehill threw a 74-yard touchdown pass to Kenny Stills - but couldn't do anything else on offense.

"We've got to get it fixed and quick, and by that I mean Monday," Tannehill said. "We're kind of in a dark spot right now. It's squarely on our shoulders."

The Bengals' defense expected to get a lift from Burfict's return. The volatile linebacker was suspended by the NFL for the first three games because of his illegal hits. He got a loud ovation when he ran onto the field during introductions wearing a baseball cap. Burfict knocked down a pass and had three tackles.

"He's amazing," end Carlos Dunlap said. "Did you see the plays he made? Those aren't plays you can coach. He came off his couch and played great. It's good to have him back."

Mostly, it was Green's show. He caught a 51-yard pass off Dalton's scramble in the first half, and had a 43-yard catch that set up another field goal in the third quarter for a 19-7 lead.


A large fan banner in the upper deck at Paul Brown Stadium honored Miami Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez, who died with two friends in a boat crash early Sunday near Miami Beach. The banner read: "Jose 16 Heaven's Bright."


The Bengals rushed for 77 yards and only a 2.1-yard average against the second-worst run defense in the league, one missing two starting linebackers.


Miami had seven penalties for 68 yards. The most egregious was by Terrence Fede, who pushed Kevin Huber to the ground after he punted in the third quarter. The penalty gave Cincinnati the ball, and the Bengals got a field goal out of it.


Dolphins: LT Branden Albert and C Anthony Steen were inactive with sprained ankles. Also missing were LBs Koa Misi (neck) and Jelani Jenkins (groin). C Mike Pouncey has missed all four games with a hip injury.

Bengals: TE Tyler Eifert was inactive again, contributing to the Bengals' trouble close to the goal line. He's recovering from offseason ankle surgery and returned to practice on a limited basis last week. CB Dre Kirkpatrick was inactive with a hamstring injury suffered Sunday. G Clint Boling sat out most of the fourth quarter with an injured left shoulder.


Stills and Dolphins safety Michael Thomas knelt with their hands over their hearts during the anthem.


Tannehill was 15 of 25 for 189 yards with a touchdown, an interception, a fumble and five sacks. Dalton was 22 of 31 for 296 yards with a touchdown and a sack.


The Dolphins begin a stretch of four straight home games against Tennessee, Pittsburgh, Buffalo and the New York Jets.

The Bengals have a tough two-game stretch, playing Dallas and New England on the road. They're 1-5 in Dallas, dropping their last three. They've dropped their last six at New England, last winning in 1986.