FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Quick hits from Patriots coach Bill Belichick’s Thursday news conference:
1. More dime package from the Broncos. Belichick pointed out how the Broncos played more dime packages (6 defensive backs) against the Steelers, so that’s a change to prepare for. “I’m sure they’ll have a couple new wrinkles for us, as they always do, and we’ll have to be able to handle those within the game,” Belichick said.
2. Cold weather coming. Asked by a television news reporter about the expected cold weather Saturday night, and if he was ready for it, Belichick was quick with a reply. “We’re ready for whatever we get,” he said. “We’ve had over 100 practices this year and they’ve been in all types of conditions. Whatever we get, I hope we’ll be ready to play in.”
3. Tebow thoughts. A national reporter started to ask about Tim Tebow and how there has been media debate on whether he can or can’t play, when Belichick interrupted. “Right, I would look at the won-loss record. That’s what I would look at,” he said.
4. Insight on Solder. With a Denver-based television station in town to preview the game, a reporter asked about rookie offensive tackle Nate Solder, who is from Colorado. “Nate’s done a good job for us this year,” Belichick said. “He’s come in and gotten a lot of reps on both sides, left and right tackle, but most of his playing has come at right tackle. He’s versatile. He’s also played some tight end for us. He’s gotten a lot of playing time and he’s handled all the things we’ve thrown at him very well. … He’s smart, very athletic and he’s been very consistent.”
5. O’Brien balancing two jobs. Asked about offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien and how he’s balanced this week between his coordinator duties and Penn State duties, Belichick didn’t want to get too much into it. “I think everybody is really focused on this game, him and everybody else, so as much effort and energy as we can put into the Broncos, that’s what we’re all doing. Bill has worked as hard as anybody has this week. I think he’s very well prepared. I think our team is well prepared. I hope that we’ll be able to go out there and perform at a good competitive level as a unit.”