NFL Draft 2015: Bill Belichick Discusses The Day Three Picks

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Q: It strikes me that a lot of the players you took can do multiple things and you’ll find out how they look when they get here. It’s not like they have predetermined things they’ll do. Has it always been that way?

BB: Yeah, I think you always bring them in and see what they do. We haven’t had them in this program. It’s a different level of competition. It’s a different structure than any of them have been in before. We’ll see how they react to it and how they perform in our system relative to some other ones.

Q: I should say it’s more ambiguous with some of the guys where they’ll play. You don’t know if Shaq will play center or guard. It’s not like you know where they’ll play.

BB: I think the players that we take we have an idea of what we think they’ll do for our team. Each guy has a specific, ‘Here’s what we think he’ll do.’ Now, what he actually does or not, we can’t forecast that with 100 percent accuracy. But I’d say that’s the way it is with everybody. Draft anybody you want, but until you actually get them into your system and start working with them and see how their skills transfer to what you’re doing, I don’t think you really know until you actually start doing it. Even if the guy has played in the league for 10 years, I don’t know that you know that. We brought Randy Moss in here, I didn’t know what it was like working with Randy Moss until we worked with Randy Moss. He had some great skills. He had some things that we’re different maybe than what – we just didn’t know. I don’t think – we have a plan what we think they are, but we’ll see how it turns out. I don’t know.

Q: Going into the draft, did you think the edge rusher spot was deep in this draft?

BB: I’d say there were a number of players at that position or had those kind of skills. But I think that the players that we took that would fall into that category also bring other things to the table, whether it’s the ability to play off the line or the ability to be a rusher not off the edge, or at least they’ve done it. Again, we’ll see how they do. I don’t know how it will turn out, but at least they’ve done some of those things: either rushed inside, played off the ball, played in coverage. I don’t think it’s just one thing.

Q: Do you like the versatility that you’ve added?

BB: Again, I don’t know. Look, there’s a lot to be said for being able to do something really well. I’m not against that in any way. Maybe some of the guys that have done several things do one thing great and that’s what their role is. That’s great too, but we’ll see.

Q: You mentioned Joe Cardona was a need pick. Obviously there’s a Navy connection. I’m just wondering how much that helps his profile in the eyes of the team. You said he was the best long snapper in the combine.

BB: Look, I’m not trying to evaluate the rest of the draft. He was the only guy that went to the combine, so if that’s a measure – which I’m not saying it is –

Q: How much did where he went to school help him as opposed to if he was at another school?

BB: Joe Judge worked out – we evaluate all the players that we think can help us at every position: snappers, punters, kickers, every other position. If we think a guy can come in and help us and play for us, then we’re interested in him. It doesn’t make any difference where he’s from. We’ve drafted snappers before, we’ve drafted punters before, we’ve drafted kickers before. I’ve drafted all those positions. If you feel like the player is worthy of it, then – it’s not like you can have depth at those positions. You can’t have three snappers. Somebody has to have that job. If you feel like the guy can do it and you the take him then hopefully he’ll be able to do it.

Q: We saw Dante Scarnecchia pop up at a bunch of pro days this spring. What kind of impact did he have in the pre-draft evaluation process and this weekend?

BB: Given the way our season went this year, the length of it and the offseason schedule and so forth, he was able to help us out and go do a few things for us in the draft process that were very helpful. He did a great job. He obviously has a lot of experience with our system, a lot of experience with players that are on our roster for comparison sake, players that we’ve drafted or evaluated in the past. So we kind of asked him to help us out in a situation where we were kind of, I’d say a little bit from a personnel standpoint, a little bit behind the curve there. He was available and he did a great job.

Q: When you’re scouting or evaluating players, is part of the process envisioning what role they’ll have on special teams?

BB: It’s envisioning what role they have on your team in every sense of the word role. How they would play on offense, defense, special teams, kind of how they would fit on to your team, how they would fit in the weight room, in the meeting room, in every place they are, what they need. I’d say every player needs something – usually a lot more than one thing – and whether or not you feel like as an organization you can give that player what he needs, whether that’s scheme or a certain type of training or whatever it is. So, yeah, all that is a part of it. Just trying to figure all that out: how he fits with you in small areas, very specific areas, and then in relation to the big picture. When you have a team, you have to manage all the aspects of your team. There’s the financial aspect and the salary cap we have to manage, an age [aspect] and there’s a transitional aspect to our team. I mean, there’s going to be turnover; that’s the business we’re in. Understanding where that turnover could occur, it’s all part of the management. So yeah, everything. We try to – I’m not saying we do a great job of it or do it perfect or anything, but we definitely take it into consideration, talk about it and try to do the best we can with it. Sometimes you can have control over it; sometimes you have to give something up to get something else. Maybe it solves one or two problems, but leaves something else that’s maybe not quite the way you want it but it’s the best you can do.