Belichick and Patriots Readying for Return to Houston

Belichick and the Patriots defeated the Carolina Panthers 32-29 for the franchise's second Super Bowl win.

Bill Belichick
FILE - Getty Images

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick is preparing the team for a return to the site of their 2004 Super Bowl victory over the Carolina Panthers. 

Belichick and the Patriots defeated the Carolina Panthers 32-29 for the franchise's second Super Bowl win at Reliant Stadium in Houston. 

"Crazy game," Belichick recalled. "Seemed like whoever had the ball last was going to be in a good position." 

In 2014 the name of the stadium was changed to NRG Stadium.

The Patriots will travel to Houston on Monday. Belichick says his staff is working on moving the team to Houston, including the Patriots' practice location at University of Houston. 

"Logistical things for this game." 

But while Patriots staffers handle logistics, including tickets, lodging, and transportation, Belichick's focus is, "off to Atlanta as a coaching staff." 

Belichick was asked about the impact of Falcons' general manager Thomas Dimitroff, who was the Patriots' director of college scouting from 2003-2007 before moving on to Atlanta. 

"I go back a long way with Tom," Belichick said. 

Dimitroff's father was a scout with Belichick at the Browns and Dimitroff also scouted in Cleveland before moving to New England. 

Belichick noted Dimitroff's stamp on the Falcons and how it revolves around speed. 

"They close up space. Linebackers, linemen play fast. They have 9 or 10 players faster than the average player at their position. They play quite a lot of players, they pursue hard, close space, and are aggressive. Look like they're faster than almost every team they play." 

Belichick also spoke about what he might glean from the Patriots' regular season game against the Seahawks, the team that Falcons head coach Dan Quinn helped build as Seattle's defensive coordinator before moving to Atlanta.. 

"Schematically quite a lot of carryover. At first glance, more pressure from Atlanta than Seattle ran. Schemes very similar. Similarity in the skill sets."

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