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New England Patriots prep for London game vs. Rams

  • By Henry Hodgson NFL.com
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LONDON -- The New England Patriots landed in England on Friday morning, and despite their bodies feeling like it still was the middle of the night, coach Bill Belichick met the media at their central London hotel.

To anyone who has previously witnessed a Belichick news conference, this was a vintage performance, especially since it was scheduled for 4 a.m. ET, after a transatlantic flight.

When asked about the importance of bringing the sport to an international audience, Belichick replied: "Wherever they schedule them, we play them. Our job is just to get ready to play."

And although the Patriots played in London in 2009, defeating the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 35-7, Belichick clearly didn't leave impressed by the British fans on that occasion.

"It's not really a football crowd," he said. "It's random. If I'm talking to somebody and you hear the crowd go crazy, you think something has happened, but that's their cheer or their chant or whatever it is."

Belichick made it clear his main goal is to keep this week as normal as possible for his team. While the St. Louis Rams arrived in London and conducted all of their preparations based out of Arsenal Football Club's training facility, Belichick explained his decision to stay at their base by saying, "there's an advantage to flying in early, the drawback is moving all your stuff there."

The first act for the Patriots will be to quickly acclimate themselves to a different time zone, something Belichick has tried to achieve by changing the team's standard working week.

"We've had three days of practice already this week," Belichick explained. "Saturday will be a normal day for us, but today is a transition day. We're trying to get acclimated to our surroundings so that on Sunday we are ready to face the Rams."

Follow Henry Hodgson on Twitter @nflukhank.

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