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New England Patriots Links 10/05/11 - Pepper Johnson Doesn't Cross The Line

Bill Belichick talks with the media about the upcoming Jets game.

Well, it's a division game, so of course it's a big game - all the division games are. This is the next one, so we'll put everything we've got into this one. Then when it's over, we'll take a look at it, move on and put everything we've got into next week. Obviously, it's an important game, we'll do the best we can this week to maximize our preparation opportunities and be ready to go on Sunday.

We're mostly just trying to go out there and play well on Sunday. That's what we try to do every week. We've won plenty of games in the past, we've lost some. Those games really don't have much bearing on this one.

Bill O'Brien address how important to be balanced and what the run game allows them to do.

We always try to stay balanced. Whatever our game plan personnel groupings are for that game, we will always try to have a good mix of run and pass and when you're able to run the ball, you're able to set up a number of different things off of that - play-action being obviously one of them. You're just able to balance up your offense and keep the defense guessing as to what you're going to do.

Pepper Johnson responds to questions about the play of the line and the pass rush through the first four games and if it has been what he hoped for so far.

Yes, and some. We're getting a lot of good plays and a lot of productive plays from some guys that are playing some techniques and are doing some things that they're not normally used to doing or accustomed to doing. It's kind of hard teaching some old dogs new tricks, but we have some guys that are buying into the system and working at it, working hard to try to do some of the things that we ask them to do.

I'm a little more than satisfied [with the pass rush]. I'm quite sure the question has spawned from stats and not really detail of watching the game. I'm watching our guys do what we're asking them to do. We're actually hitting the quarterback. We're just not coming up with the sacks. Can we get there sooner? I don't know - to come up with the sack. I'm not much of a stat person. I just know how we have been affecting some throws. We've been getting as much pressure as we possibly can from the situations that we are in.

I think the more [the new guys] get acclimated, the more comfortable they will play. The more comfortable they're playing, [the] more confident. You start seeing guys playing a lot more aggressively. We have a lot of playmakers. We have some guys that can make some plays. You would see a little more of that when guys become more accustomed to what we're doing and what we're asking them to do. No, I'm not going to pile more on their plate. We just want them to do it more aggressively, more often, with a lot more consistency.



  • Chris Forsberg says the Jets week hype has begun quietly from Gillette.
  • Jeff Howe says you can set your watch to Patriots-Jets week by the sound of Antonio Cromartie's voice.
  • Greg A. Bedard wonders whether the Patriots can get to Mark Sanchez, with or without Jets All-Pro center Nick Mangold.
  • Ian Rapoport checks in with Shaun Ellis who's still settling in with the Pats and thinking about this week's matchup against his former team.
  • Karen Guregian reports Rex Ryan erupted on his team after being beaten up and throttled by the Ravens, showing just how huge this week's game is for them.
  • Mike Cole tells us Hall of Famer Michael Irvin calls Wes Welker the best receiver in the league right now.
  • Greg A. Bedard notes Rob Gronkowski was a stand out Sunday, giving Stevan Ridley 22 holes to run through.
  • Jeff Howe thinks Rob Gronkowski is on his way to becoming the best TE in football, plus 19 other Patriots thoughts.
  • Christopher Price tells us why Bill Belichick thinks Brady's performance against Oakland was one of his best.
  • Jeff Howe catches up with Danny Woodhead, a big fan of Will Ferrell movies.
  • Christopher Price breaks down who has been getting to the QB for the Patriots through four games.
  • Mike Reiss looks at the tackle leaderboard for the Patriots. Devin McCourty tops the chart and Brandon Spikes is rising with 6 against the Raiders.
  • Chris Forsberg notes Aaron Rodgers overtakes Tom Brady in Total QBR.
  • Tom E. Curran gives us gripes, observations, factual stats, fat people on planes and how did Gary Guyton get so slow so fast? All this and more in 44 lines!
  • Jeff Howe believes most of the gripes with officiating could be simmered with a dose of consistency.
  • Monique Walker Patriots Notebook: Pepper Johnson says when it comes to getting pressure on the QB, his defensive group is doing what is being asked; When Plaxico Burress became available the Patriots were one of the few teams interested in him; Patriots re-watched last season's playoff loss to the Jets strictly for scheme, not emotion; Jets CB Antonio Cromartie stands by his not-so-nice comments from last season about his feelings for Tom Brady.
  • Karen Guregian Patriots Notebook: Patriots players and coaches try and downplay the significance of 'Jets Week'; Belichcik acknowledged his team showed interest in Plaxico Burress in the offseason; Pepper Johnson said he's not frustrated with Haynesworth not being on the field, his job is to coach who's there; Johnson expects everyone to shoulder the burden of not having Jerod Mayo on the field; Danny Woodhead and Julian Edelman both suffered injuries last week, but their availability for Sunday is still not known.