-- Bill Belichick just finished his pre-practice press conference with the media, which began 20 minutes late, and he said that the Patriots are going to continue working on situational football over the next few days, including but not limited to their two-minute drill, red zone offense and defense, third down offense and defense and goal line offense and defense.
He said that the Patriots are doing things a bit different than they did last year, like having more walkthroughs. As a result, fewer marquee players have been taking days off.
He also said that the Patriots are installing more plays quicker this year than they did last year and that should help them when the Saints come to town next week.
He said that third-year running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis could get more of an opportunity to run the ball this year if he continues working hard and the coaching staff determines that the team can be better with him running the ball more than someone else.
He also said that Green-Ellis, who has a career 3.9 yards per carry average, has been productive in the few chances that he's gotten to run the ball.
"I think he's improved over the last two years significantly," Belichick said. "...Benny works hard and he's tough. He's very professional and he really takes his job seriously. When you tell him to improve in something, he'll work very diligently to do it."
In addition, Belichick said that the addition of defensive linemen Damione Lewis and Gerard Warren will provide a big help. He said that both players came to camp in great shape and that they are very professional athletes.
"They're both very experienced guys who have had real productive careers in other places but we're asking them to do some things a little differently than what they've done in the past," said Belichick. "Our defense is structured a little bit differently and I think they've adapted very well. They're both smart guys who are very professional and work hard."
Belichick said that Vince Wilfork has taken on the leadership role for the defensive linemen and he's done a great job of communicating with all of the D-linemen, including Lewis and Warren.
He also said that veteran tight end Alge Crumpler "has been really good for our football team."