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Here’s what Bill Belichick had to say about Bailey Zappe and the Patriots’ offense

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Belichick was also asked again if he wants to stay with the Patriots beyond 2023.

Bill Belichick after the Patriots’ loss to the Chargers. AP Photo/Michael Dwyer

After being shut out at Gillette Stadium for the second time in 2023, Bill Belichick harped on familiar talking points following the Patriots’ 6-0 loss to the Chargers.

“Again, some missed opportunities here today,” Belichick said in his postgame press conference. “I thought all the guys played really hard. We moved the ball, but were on a long field. Just really didn’t do a good job with field position. Couldn’t play the complimentary game that we needed to play. Chargers did a couple of times, got their six points and obviously that was enough.

“Just need to do a better job of what we’ve talked about all year: Making plays in critical situations that we need to make,” he continued. “That’s really about it. Multiple plays you can point to on that, but obviously it just wasn’t enough.”

Despite the decision to start backup quarterback Bailey Zappe, the Patriots were unable to put together any offense. The team’s longest drive of the game — a 54-yard effort in the first quarter that required 13 plays — ended with a turnover.

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Asked how he can account for the the offense’s lack of production, Belichick cited his opening statement.

“Yeah I just tried to do that,” he replied. “Sorry if that wasn’t good enough.”

The Patriots coach was equally succinct regarding his thought process on starting Zappe over former starter (and 2021 first-round pick) Mac Jones.

“I thought he deserved it.”

With Jones — once seen as the future of the team — officially on the bench, Belichick was asked if the Patriots have let him down from a quarterback developmental standpoint.

“Just trying to put the best team out there that we can every week,” Belichick said in response.

Zappe finished the day completing 13 of 25 passes for 121 yards. He was sacked five times as his offensive line struggled to deal with the Chargers’ pass rush.

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“He’s worked hard all year,” Belichick said of Zappe. Questioned why he was starting Zappe now instead of earlier in the year, Belichick provided a straightforward response.

“We gave Mac the opportunity to work through his progression with the offense, and obviously we hadn’t had a lot of production,” he explained. “I thought Bailey deserved a chance to play, so he played today.”

As has become more common as losses have mounted, Belichick was asked if he still wants to coach the Patriots next season.

“I’m looking forward to this week, getting ready for the Steelers,” he told Boston.com’s Khari Thompson.

The Patriots, now 2-10, continue to occupy the bottom of both the division and conference standings.

And after multiple games in which rookie place kicker Chad Ryland struggled, New England did not attempt a field goal on Sunday. One of Belichick’s more substantive comments came in explanation of why the team left Ryland on the bench.

“Kicking conditions weren’t great out there today, especially on those long field goals. They were tough in pregame. I think it would’ve been a tough kick.”

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Source: Boston Globe

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