FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — In a news conference that turned testy at times Tuesday morning, New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick deflected several questions about the status of injured quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, who has a sprained AC joint in his right throwing shoulder.
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“I’m a football coach; I’m not a doctor,” Belichick said when asked how he juggles some uncertainty with Garoppolo’s health and roster decisions. “The medical staff is the medical staff. I coach the team; the medical people handle the injuries. They don’t call plays. I don’t do surgeries. We have a great deal there. It works out good.”
Peppered with questions about Garoppolo, Belichick began to lose patience with reporters.
“A player’s personal situation, his health, always comes first. That’s not a football decision; that’s a medical decision,” he said. “Football decisions are based on what’s best for the football team. That’s what we’ve always done around here, and that’s what we’ll always do as long as I’m here. It will never change. We’ll always do what’s best for the football team. That’s what it’s all driven by.”
Later, Belichick added: “Let me put it a different way — I’m the coach, I do what’s best for the football team. I don’t know why we can’t understand that.”
Belichick said Garoppolo was at the team’s facility Tuesday, and the coach’s expectation is that he will be at practice — likely to be a light walk-through. The quarterback also was at the facility Monday.
Speaking in general terms, Belichick didn’t rule out the possibility that a quarterback could be a game-time decision.