What does ‘starting over’ entail for the Patriots?
In the days following the New England Patriots’ 34-0 loss to the New Orleans Saints on Sunday, there will be a lot of talk about the team ‘starting over’ big picture this offseason. But starting over in-season? That was a concept brought up by a number of players after the game on Sunday.
The idea of a fresh start, after a 1-4 start to the season, seemed to be on the mind of many Patriots who spoke Sunday afternoon. Whether is was part of the postgame message from the coaching staff, or something that happened organically, it was a phrase that was brought up multiple times in speaking with the media.
“I think you’ve got to go back to – starting over, right? Go back to the fundamentals and keep it in the simplest form,” center and team captain David Andrews said when asked how the team begins the process of turning things around. “It’s tough. We put a lot into it each week, and to go out there and not put your best foot forward on Sunday is tough. We’ve got to come in and get back to work. That’s really all I know to do. We can’t lay down, can’t quit. It’s a long year. We’re going to come back in and go back to work. That’s all I know to do.”
Bill Belichick also made reference to starting over in his opening statement. “Obviously it was a poor performance today here. So just plain and simply, we’ve got to find a way to play and coach better than that. So that’s what we are going to do, start all over and get back on a better track than we’re on right now,” he said.
While it may sound weird, Belichick did say he’s ‘started over’ during a season before. However, he didn’t elect to give a specific example of when he did so.
Belichick also didn’t explain what ‘starting over’ means at a literal level. Asked what starting over would entail, he simply replied “starting over.”
So, it’s tough to say exactly what ‘starting over’ will entail for the Patriots heading into their Week 6 matchup with the Las Vegas Raiders. Changes to the depth chart? Changes to the system? Changes to personnel? It seems like we’ll have to keep an eye out for all of it this week.