By Steve Pouliot - 14 June 2012:
Bill Belichick met the media today, and it felt like mid season already, with long, drawn out diatribes, and the usual, curt, short "you get nothing" answers There were plenty of topics covered, from the weather, Jake Ballard, and the running back situation in Foxboro. The Hoodie even got in a little baseball
The Jake Balard situation was really a non-story, at least according to The Hooded One. When asked what he liked about Ballard, it was clear it wasn't going to be a topic Belichick wanted to elaborate on. "He obviously had a real productive year last year. We'll just see how all that goes. We haven't seen him yet." When asked about the timetable, the answer came from the Belichick cut and paste responses "I don't know. But we wouldn't comment on injuries even if we did." The Hoodie stated.
Belichick did address the "unwritten rule" controversy, regarding the Jake Ballard signing. "First of all, there aren't any unwrittens. As you know, as astute as you are on the rules, I'm sure you're aware that you can't negotiate a contract with a player while he's under contract. You can't negotiate a contract, release him and then re-negotiate another contract with him that was already done in advance. I'm sure the Giants weren't doing that. So a player is on waivers, then he's on waivers – ours or anybody else's. As far as anybody else, I don't know what unwrittens you're talking about."
So the Giants were up to something? Is that what he's intimating? Hmmm
Belichick did talk about the running backs today, notably Shane Vereen and Joseph Addai. When asked how he'd rate Vereen's off-season, Belichick said "I think you can put a lot of guys in the good category in that they have physically improved and also mentally improved from their understanding of what we do, understanding of what other teams in the league are doing and their physical condition is better. I'd put a lot of our guys in that category. Now there are some guys who haven't been able to train as much this year because they're rehabbing an injury or something like that. Those guys are kind of trying to get back to where they were. I'd say the other guys, probably just about all of them, would be moving farther ahead because they've worked hard, they've been here. The guys that have been here, that have worked hard, which I would say is just about all of them, have improved and that's what the off season is for. Guys that are rehabbing are rehabbing and we hope that we can get them back as soon as they're ready."
When pressed for a follow up on Vereen's strides int he weight room, Hoodie responded "We were trying to get him active last year. He did play. He missed a little bit of time at the end of the season and he was more ready to play in the playoffs, even though he didn't play. We don't know how that's going to go. Those guys were still trying to play. I think it's more the practice squad players that would fall into that category – that could start an off season program during the season and then start another off season program once the season was over."
Oh Joseph Addai: "Joe is a veteran player that has obviously been in a lot of big games, been in a system that's had some multiples in terms of changing plays and audibling, things like that. I think our system is different from probably any other system probably because of our players or our coaches or the way it's formulated. It's an adjustment for any new player or coach, just like if we went anywhere, it would be an adjustment for one of our players or coaches to go somewhere else. I don't think it's anything unusual. Joe has worked hard at it. He's a very conscientious guy that wants to get it right, wants to know what you want to do, wants to try to get it right. I respect that." Belichick said.
In a lighter moment, Belichick was asked if Joe Torre was the best manager of the last 20 years. Belichick intoned "He's not better than Tony LaRussa, no." READ MORE IN SPORTS AT FANVIEWPOINT.COM