Bill Belichick made it clear what he’s looking for from the Patriots’ quarterbacks
On Monday, New England Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien shared with reporters that the decision about the team’s starting quarterback for this Sunday will ultimately be made by head coach Bill Belichick. Belichick spoke to reporters on Tuesday morning ahead of the team’s first practice of the week, fielding questions about the quarterback position for the first time since O’Brien spoke on the matter.
Over the nine-minute media availability, Belichick was asked some question about Sunday’s starting quarterback or the process to decide that quarterback 14 times. While there were a variety of different questions, most drew the same or very similar answers from the head coach.
“I told all the players the same thing- be ready to go,” Belichick said in response to the first question, which was asking outright if a decision had been made on the starting quarterback.” He went on to use some form of saying every player needs to “be ready” or “be prepared” 12 times over the nine minutes.
It was a pretty classic press conference from Belichick, with the idea of players “being ready” saying very little. Even established backup quarterbacks have a role to prepare for on a week-to-week – they still need to ‘be ready’ for games. In that sense Belichick’s answer added little, if any context to the current state of the quarterback room. That doesn’t mean the job isn’t up for grabs, but his answers didn’t shed much light on the process of decided who will be under center on Sunday.
Belichick steered away from that line of thinking twice when asked quarterback-related questions. Asked directly if the quarterback decision will be based on who performs the best in practice this week, Belichick went to another go-to line of his before heading back to the line of the day, saying “it’ll be based on what I think is best for the team, and I’ve told everybody to be ready to go.”
Later, Belichick was asked if he’s made a decision in his own mind, regardless of what he’s told the team to this point. “We’ll let you know on Sunday,” he replied.
So pending any outside reports, it seems like the Patriots’ quarterback mystery could extend through the week. There may be a chance to get a glimpse of the quarterback rotation at practice – as was the case last week – but that’s still minimal.
For more on the quarterback position in the meantime, check out this recap of O’Brien’s Monday press conference, which went into more detail about the decision…