Bill Belichick held his usual day-after-game conference call on Tuesday. Player personnel director Nick Caserio and quarterbacks' coach Bill O'Brien also participated in the call.
Here were their comments relating to his team's showdown with the Patriots on Sunday at Soldier Field.
"Chicago's been really impressive," Belichick said. "They really do everything pretty well: offensively, defensively, special teams. They have a great returner, [Devin Hester]; Robbie Gould, a great kicker. Defensively, they really do well on third down. They haven't allowed many points, have a lot of negative plays in the running game [and] cause a lot of fumbles. They definitely thrive on turnovers. I think, offensively, [Jay] Cutler is playing as well as I've seen him play. He's done a great job with Coach [Mike] Martz's offense. He's really carrying a lot of the offense on his shoulders, along with their receivers. Certainly [Matt] Forte and [Chester] Taylor do a good job in the back field. [Greg] Olsen and all the receivers - [Earl] Bennett, [Johnny] Knox, Hester - are a good group with a really good quarterback. Cutler's made a lot of plays running as well as throwing, so he's very dangerous in and out of the pocket, throwing or running. So, I think the Bears' record really speaks for itself: 9-3. So, we've got to go out there. We know it's going to be a big challenge for us on a short week for a team that we really don't know very well that has a lot of good players and is well-coached, very fundamentally sound and does a good job in every phase of the game. So, today is going to be a big day for us, try and get things organized for the players coming in here tomorrow and then turn the corner very quickly and get on to Chicago.
With the short week, Belichick was asked whether he and his staff had had much time to prep for Bears before Monday night's 45-3 win over the Jets.
"Well we always do that," he said. "We have certain coaches on our staff that are responsible to break down the film. On Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, we'll have a normal week but by Friday and Saturday, most all the coaches get those breakdowns and start to do some preliminary work on the scouting report and things like that. But, in this particular case, similar to the Indianapolis/Detroit situation, we really had to get a bit of a jump on it and start doing some little more game planning and start finishing up the scouting report prior to the game we're actually playing - the Monday night game or the Sunday game in the case of Indianapolis a couple of weeks ago. We try to get a jump start on them, but we're still playing catch up because so much of our focus was on the Jets game. But, we got a little bit of a jump start and [now] we're just scrambling, doing the best we can."
Later, Patriots director of player personnel Nick Caserio was asked if he was tempted to sign free agent Julius Peppers.
"Julius is like any other free agent that was out there," he said. "There were a pool of players in the market; he was one of the players at the particular position. We evaluate him just like we do a lot of other players as far as how detailed and how involved we were in the discussions. That's something that we keep between ourselves and the player and the representatives, whomever they may be. Julius is a good football player, there's no question about it. He's been productive for Chicago this season. Not only him, but they have a pretty formidable front four. They play a lot of guys whether it's [Israel] Idonije, [Matt] Toeaina, Anthony Adams, and Marcus Harrison. There are a lot of guys in that front four that pose problems. Then you go to the second level with two of the better linebackers at their respective positions in [Lance] Briggs and [Brian] Urlacher. Julius is a good player, he's been a productive player in this league for a long time and that's continued. We'll certainly have to account for him along with some other folks next Sunday.
Here's what quarterbacks' coach Bill O'Brien had to say about the Bears' defense:
"The Bears are a very very good defense. They're strong in every position. They have a very strong front with obviously Julius Peppers and the other guys that they have up front. They have a very good linebacking core, led by [Brian] Urlacher and [Lance] Briggs. Their secondary has been playing really well. They present a different challenge than, for instance, the Jets because they do some things. They're a four-down front, things like that are a little bit different. We've just got to grind it out today and into the night and figure out how we want to attack them on first and second down and present it to the players tomorrow and then kind of go from there. At this point, they're going to be a big challenge for us. Again, like we say every week, the road makes it a little bit tougher, playing on the road. Looks like it's going to be a very tough place to play, so it's going to be a huge challenge for us."