Patriots

Belichick Explains 4-3, Talks Carter, Ellis

By Levan Reid, WBZ-TV Sports
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SEPTEMBER 25: Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots looks on during NFL game action against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on September 25, 2011 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)

SEPTEMBER 25: Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots looks on during NFL game action against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on September 25, 2011 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)

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FOXBORO (CBS) – New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick was on Sirius Radio this week and he started to explain the 4-3 defensive concept.

In all honesty, there is no reason to get into this. Coach understands this like the back of his hand and when he is trying to describe it, it comes off as crazy talk to us regular people.

He did say that it’s helping out the team though.

“We’ve played a mixture of odd fronts and even fronts, but I just felt like from a starting point — given the lack of spring opportunities to practice and meet, and the shortened training camp in terms of actual number of practices — that from a teaching standpoint we felt like there would be more carryover teaching our base defense and nickel defense really as one front,” Belichick explained.

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“So we felt like it would be a better opportunity to evaluate our players and not try to over-install and put in a ton of defense. Try to cut it down a little bit and see if we could execute it better. Certainly, we have a long way to go but I do feel like we’re making progress, and I think our players at least understand what we’re doing.”

He went on in the interview to talk about other topics. Here are some of them:

On Andre Carter: “He’s doing great. He’s so professional, a great example for all of us — younger players, older players. He comes early, stays late, works hard, is in terrific condition, can run all day. Really takes his job seriously, wants to do everything right, very team-oriented. He’s been a pleasure to coach. He was a guy we looked at pretty closely when he came out of Cal. It was 10 years ago when the 3-4 was really our base defense, it was hard to find the right role, the right impact for him, in that. I personally went out there and spent a lot of time with him, and loved everything about him, except the fit he would have in a 3-4. Fast-forward a decade later and we made that decision to kind of transition our front a little bit this year, and he was really the perfect guy for it. I do think from a skill-set, that’s what he does best, and that’s what we’re asking him to do. It was a great fit and we get all the character and leadership and work ethic of his game along with it. So it was great.”

Read: All The Talk Around Dallas

On Shaun Ellis: “Shaun played most of his career on the left side, and Andre has played most of his career on the right, so it was really a good match for us to have those two veteran players with not only the quality of play, but the type of individuals they are — the leadership, the toughness and the work ethic and dependability and professionalism that they come in with every day. It’s been great, along with some of our other players, like Vince Wilfork, Mayo, Rob Ninkovich, and younger guys like McCourty and Chung, guys like that. Really, from a team chemistry and communication and working standpoint, it’s been very good. Shaun has added a lot to our team, and so has Andre.”

Stats: 2011 NFL Leaders

Tune in to the Patriots-Cowboys game Sunday at 4:15 pm on 98.5 The Sports Hub. Get your Patriots Sunday started with Patriots Gameday at 11:30am on WBZ-TV and The Sports Hub’s pregame coverage, beginning at 1:00 pm. After the game tune in to the Postgame show on 98.5, and to Patriots Fifth Quarter on MY TV38.

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