Belichick on rookies: 'Are you kidding me?'

September, 12, 2012
9/12/12
1:20
PM ET
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- This one was right in Bill Belichick's wheelhouse.

Belichick, who has been known to deliver "humble pie" to his players on a regular basis, was asked Wednesday if there was any reason he might need to remind his rookies who performed well on Sunday that they've only played one game.

Before the questioner could finish the thought, Belichick jumped in with a passionate reply.

"Are you kidding me? They've played one game," Belichick said, his tone suggesting that he appreciated the opportunity to knock Chandler Jones, Dont'a Hightower and Co. down a peg.

"I don't think any rookie has all the answers after one game. I don't think any experienced coach has the answers after one game either. I mean, it's one game. Everybody needs to be coached, everybody needs to improve, there are a lot of things that everybody needs to do better, and I would put the rookies at the absolute top of that list.

"Like not behind anybody. They would be No. 1. It's going to get a lot harder for them before it gets easier, I'll tell you that."

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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