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  • The Patriots Act

    The Patriots act

    CEO Belichick has created the model organization in today's NFL
    Posted: Wednesday October 20, 2004 3:10PM; Updated: Wednesday October 20, 2004 3:20PM

    Certain sports possess major cultural qualities -- even if they're contradictory. Football, for example, is both militaristic and social, a brutal game of field generals and platoons and bombs, surrounded by weekend party conviviality -- dates and drinks, tailgating and midriffed sexy cheerleaders.

    That martial side of football also increasingly highlights the technological. Coaches are all attached by telephones, assistants use camera surveillance, computers are as much a part of the game now as are shoulder pads and painkillers. No team is more advanced than the New England Patriots. More important, it is as much the methods that the Patriots use off the field to build their team as it is their style on the field that makes them the juggernaut they have improbably become in a league that is supposed to be all about parity.

    The four-star general who commands the Patriots is their head coach, Bill Belichick, a man with a background that might seem at odds with coaching. As a player, Belichick was better at lacrosse than football. He attended the elite prep school Andover and then Wesleyan College, with its Division-III football program. But Belichick was also the son of a football coach at the Naval Academy, so he grew up in both a football and military environment.

    Presumably Belichick is a fine coach on the field, but in a way, we don't really know. Maybe it doesn't matter. We do know that he has superb assistants. Football, like the army, is a hierarchical enterprise. Staff officers are crucial. And just as crucial, Belichick has developed a system to deal with the bureaucratic intricacies of the business of football today, where the salary cap and free agency force complicated decisions on all franchises. It is primarily Belichick's ability to manipulate personnel and finances that have made the Patriots the winner of a record 20 straight games. Management executives and academics see Belichick more as a CEO than a coach.

    This developed sophistication in football is something that seems to leap ahead once a generation. There are lots of outstanding teams, but Belichick's Patriots are specifically the heirs of the post-war Cleveland Browns and the 1970s Dallas Cowboys. The Browns were actually named for their domineering coach, Paul Brown. He made football coaching more organized and modern, showing how valuable game films could be. He infuriated traditionalists by using what were called "messenger guards," to send in all plays from the bench. Two decades later, the Cowboys organization, under a general manager named Tex Schramm, took scouting to new heights of engagement -- while, in tandem, introducing glamorous cheerleaders and other up-to-date marketing advances.

    Like Belichick, both Paul Brown and Tom Landry, the Cowboys' coach, were dry and colorless characters, the antithesis of the classic emotional model of the American football coach -- the Knute Rockne, Vince Lombardi, Bear Bryant type. But as Brown's and Landry's franchises eventually influenced all their rivals, Belichick's Patriots have begun to change the way other NFL teams operate.

    The Patriots are bound to lose sometime this season. They may very well not even win the Super Bowl again. But whatever happens, the 21st century organization man, Belichick, has made the Patriots the bellwether franchise of this NFL generation as the Browns and Cowboys were in their time.
    Clannie Nominee for ClanRam's Thickest Poster

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  • Nick
    For Kraft, Brady and Belichick, is this the beginning of the end?
    by Nick
    For Kraft, Brady and Belichick, is this the beginning of the end?
    1:00 AM ET
    Seth Wickersham
    ESPN Senior Writer

    THE PROBLEM WITH living your life under the spotlight is that the camera captures only the public eruption, not the months of silent anger. On Dec. 3, when the New England Patriots played the Buffalo Bills, Tom Brady walked to the sideline after throwing late and behind receiver Brandin Cooks on third down, ending a first-quarter drive. Brady was angrier and more irritable than usual, as has often been the case this season in the eyes of some Patriots players and staff. As he unsnapped his chinstrap, Brady passed offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels on the sideline.

    "He was wide open," McDaniels said to Brady, referring to Cooks.

    Brady kept walking, and glaring at McDaniels, so the coach repeated: "We had him open."

    Brady snapped, pivoting to McDaniels and yelling at him, "I got it!" Everyone within earshot, including head coach Bill Belichick, turned to watch as Brady screamed. He removed his helmet, and as a Patriots staffer held him back -- and with McDaniels' father and legendary high school coach in Ohio, Thom, in the stands behind the bench -- capped off the exchange by yelling, "F--- you!"

    Video of the scene went viral, with many rationalizing it as a symptom of Brady's legendary competitiveness. Brady would later apologize to McDaniels, who dismissed the incident to reporters as "part of what makes him great." After all, many in the Patriots' building knew that Brady's explosion wasn't really about McDaniels. It wasn't about Cooks. And it wasn't about the Bills game. It was about the culmination of months of significant behind-the-scenes frustrations. For almost two decades, Belichick has managed to subvert the egos of his best player, his boss and himself for the good of the team, yielding historic results. This year, though, the dynamics have been different.

    THE PATRIOTS ARE in uncharted territory. They haven't just won games and titles. They've won at an unprecedented rate and over an unprecedented span, which makes the feelings of entitlement creeping inside Gillette Stadium unprecedented as well. The Patriots, in the only statement anyone associated with the team would make on the record for this story, responded to specific questions by saying that there are "several inaccuracies and multiple examples given that absolutely did not occur," though they declined to go into detail. But according to interviews with more than a dozen New England staffers, executives, players and league sources with knowledge of the team's inner workings, the three most powerful people in the franchise -- Belichick, Brady and owner Robert Kraft -- have had serious disagreements. They differ on Brady's trainer, body coach and business partner Alex Guerrero; over the team's long-term plans at quarterback;...
    -01-05-2018, 08:24 AM
  • AvengerRam_old
    The Patriots Are Showing Their Guilt, And The NFL Doesn't Want To See The Proof
    by AvengerRam_old
    Matt Walsh won't talk.


    He's afraid the Patriots will sue him if he does.

    But, if the Patriots have nothing to hide, they could easily release him from liability. They have not done so. Why? Because they know that he has the "goods" on them. If they were not concerned about what he has, it would stand to reason that they would want him to be exposed as a liar.

    The league can also solve this problem. They could agree to defend and indemnify Walsh in the event that any disclosure he makes results in a suit by the Patriots. They have not done so. Why? Because they don't want to know if he has the "goods" on the Patriots.

    What a farce.
    -02-15-2008, 11:58 AM
  • evil disco man
    Jaguars Blame Officials For Upcoming Loss Against Patriots
    by evil disco man
    From the Brushback (a satirical sports news site):

    Jaguars Blame Officials For Upcoming Loss Against Patriots

    FOXBORO--The Jacksonville Jaguars, bitterly disappointed about their upcoming loss against the Patriots, today blamed the officials for the loss, saying they will “hand the game to the Patriots” and “clearly want them to win.”

    One player, defensive end Paul Spicer, even called it “the worst officiated game” he will ever see.

    “Saturday’s game is going to be a joke,” Spicer said. “Those refs are going to hand the game to the Patriots. My God, what will they be thinking with that phantom holding call in the third quarter? There will be barely any contact on that play.”

    Almost to a man, Jaguars players insisted that the league is biased in favor of the Patriots.

    “Oh the league definitely wants the Patriots to win,” said defensive end Bobby McCray. “You can tell. Every call goes their way. There are going to be something like five pass interference calls made against us Saturday that are going to be total BS. It’s going to be the worst officiating ever! I don’t care if I get fined for saying this, either. I don’t even think I can get fined for it, since the game hasn’t actually happened yet.”

    Coach Jack Del Rio says the loss should do nothing to take away what the team accomplished this year, especially since they will actually outplay the Patriots.

    “We’re actually going to outplay them. That's the shame of it all,” said Del Rio. “I have to go into that locker room after the game and look those players in the eye and tell them it’s okay, they should be proud of themselves anyway. And you know what? They should. We stood toe to toe with the New England Patriots, we showed what we can do when we play together, and now we have a chance to carry this momentum into…mini-camp, I guess.”

    The Jaguars aren’t the first team to complain about the officiating in a game against the Patriots this season. Several teams have complained, and some have gone as far as to say that the referees have been ordered by the commissioner’s office to help the Patriots go undefeated.

    League spokesman Greg Aiello called the accusations “ludicrous.”

    “It is absolutely ludicrous to suggest that the officials are in any way trying to affect the outcome of the game,” said Aiello. “Nobody is biased for or against anybody. There are bad calls in every game because the officials are human. Plus, the Jaguars have only themselves to blame for Saturday’s loss. Maybe if they spent more time practicing and less time whining about the refs they’d have a better shot.”

    Naturally, the feeling in the Patriots locker room was in stark contrast to the one in the Jaguars locker room.

    Said quarterback Tom Brady: “We don’t let this kind of talk bother us. We hear it all the time. Personally I...
    -01-08-2008, 10:07 PM
  • stlramman
    No tape of the Rams Walk through?
    by stlramman
    The New York Times > Log In

    Walsh turned over the tapes to the NFL and apparantly there was no tape of the Rams walk-through in his possesion. Interesting..think maybe part of the deal was to destroy it & say it never existed? I dont know it just seems strange, regardless Mr Comish better come down hard & heavy on Belicheat & the Cheatriots, sounds like some of them were sophisticated in the breaking down of coaches signals,down & distance & then the plays ran immediatly afterword, and one tape is of the AFC Championship.
    -05-07-2008, 08:42 PM
  • DJRamFan
    Steelers snap Patriots' record winning streak
    by DJRamFan
    By Bob Ryan, Globe Staff | November 1, 2004

    PITTSBURGH -- To the question of whether it would end with a bang or a whimper, here is the unequivocal numerical answer: Pittsburgh 34, New England 20.


    ''It was pretty clear the Steelers were the better team," said Patriots coach Bill Belichick. ''They outcoached us. They outplayed us. They certainly deserved to win, and they won convincingly."

    Thus ended yesterday an almost unimaginable football feat. The New England Patriots had gone 21 games and 13 calendar months without losing a game, and had become the National Football League champions for the second time by winning the Super Bowl last February. But their bid to make it 22 victories in succession ended under ideal conditions on a late afternoon when the Steelers delighted a franchise record gathering of 64,737 with a truly inspired performance.

    To the end, the Patriots stayed relentlessly on message regarding their endless succession of victories. The word ''streak" had been officially banned from their vocabularies by Belichick. In the team's pregame notes, the media was informed that "The Patriots have recorded a one-game winning streak 21 consecutive times, setting an all-time record for the 85-year history of pro football." "It was never about the streak," said linebacker Mike Vrabel. "It was not in our preparation this week."

    Week after week the Patriots had, as the pundits like to say, "found a way to win." This time, however, they submitted a brilliant formula for defeat, combining a sputtering offense with a defense that allowed a disturbing 417 yards, of which a whopping 221 came on the ground. Four turnovers led to 24 Pittsburgh points.

    "We didn't do anything near the way we are capable of doing it, and they played an outstanding game" said Belichick. "That's the result you get when those two forces collide."

    There is nothing disgraceful about losing to the Steelers. Pittsburgh is a good team. The Steelers entered the game with a 5-1 record and they regarded this game as something akin to an mid-semester exam. They always have enjoyed the backing of a raucous crowd. No one ever looks forward to playing in Pittsburgh. This was true when they played in Three Rivers Stadium, and it remains true now that they play in the outstanding facility known as Heinz Field.

    The problem is that the Patriots feel they didn't give themselves much of an opportunity to win this particular game. "We knew that, eventually, we were going to lose a game," said safety Rodney Harrison. "But we don't want to lose in that fashion."

    The Patriots started the game the way they normally do, which is to say they scored first. Pittsburgh won the toss and elected to receive. The Patriots got them off the field quickly,...
    -11-01-2004, 09:46 AM