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Planning to return for a 24th season, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick stresses need for improvement

Related: 35-23 defeat in Buffalo seals Patriots’ third losing season of Bill Belichick era

NFL: New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

Coming off only his third losing season since joining the New England Patriots in 2000, head coach Bill Belichick has already set his sights on what lies ahead. As he pointed out during his end-of-year press conference on Monday morning, the process to improve the team heading into his 24th season at the helm is starting immediately.

“We’ll begin to turn the page and move on to do the things, and start to do the things, that we feel like we need to do to improve our team and be more competitive and have better results,” Belichick said. “That hasn’t started yet — we’re still in the wake of yesterday’s game — and however that goes, I’m sure there will be a number of different aspects to that.

“But as we do every year, we’ll evaluate everything and try to make the best decisions that we can to move forward to be more competitive, to have a stronger team in the future.”

New England’s 2022 campaign came to an end on Sunday with a loss to the Buffalo Bills. The team actually entered its regular season finale in possession of the seventh playoff seed in a competitive AFC, but needed a win to make the tournament under its own power.

With the Patriots losing 35-23, and neither the Miami Dolphins nor Pittsburgh Steelers providing any assistance, their season has come to an end with an 8-9 record. Belichick, of course, is well aware that the organization as a whole has higher goals — something he made clear on Monday.

“Our record is right around .500, which is what it’s been kind of all year,” he said. “With that, some good things and some not-so-good things. So, nobody’s satisfied with that. That’s not our goal, and we need to try to improve on that. We need to improve on that.

“That’s all of us — accountability everywhere, starting with me, the coaching staff, players, each unit. They are all things that we will address and that process will start probably later today.”

As part of this process, Belichick will meet with team owner Robert Kraft as well as other members of the current coaching and team structures. The goal through all of this, as he pointed out, was to lay the ground work for improvement heading into 2023.

“Robert and I will talk about that, we’ll talk about that as a staff, and certainly individual conversations with many of the players, as we always do,” he said. “There are some that are obviously more urgent or will be more timely than others. But it will be a comprehensive course of action, as it always is. I don’t see the process being any different [this year], but we need to have better results. That’s really the bottom line.”