It would've been a safe assumption -- possibly the safest assumption -- that Bill Belichick has done some deep thinking about game plans to cope with a long lockout.
The New England Patriots coach isn't the kind of fellow to just sit back and see what happens.
Boston Herald reporter Ian R. Rapoport recently heard Belichick's opinions about the NFL and how he's mentally preparing for an unusual season.
In Belichick's mind, he already has canceled offseason workouts.
"At one point, we had to prepare for the offseason program, and that's not really a part of it now," Belichick told Rapoport. "We talked about some kind of minicamp or [organized team activities], but now, we just turn our attention to training camp and get our teaching and organization straight there."
Rapoport noted Belichick already has turned his attention to game planning for next season's opponents and putting together short lists of free agents to target.
But actual practice time probably will be compacted and force changes.
Belichick said the Patriots will adjust "whatever the time frame is, if it's less than what we're used to having, which I agree it seems like it's going to be. We'll have to take the windows that we have to teach things and try to see how much we feel realistically we can get done. Something's going to have to go, I would think. The progression's got to stay the same, but the breadth of that amount of installation could be subject to being trimmed back, maybe drastically."
It might sound counterintuitive that Belichick would be dismissive of player-organized workouts. They're a form of preparation and suggests they're staying in shape, right? Maybe.
"None of us have observed those workouts and what their idea of a productive workout is," Belichick said. "What a group of players on this team is doing relative to a group of players on another team, your guess is as good as mine."