Tuesday, November 4, 2014

BRADY, BELICHICK, AND THE WEAPONS THING


Since 2006, the New England Patriots have a record of 107 and 30 for a winning
percentage of a mind-boggling .781. The next closest team during that same period
are the Indianapolis Colts with a .662 mark.

Through free-agency, salary-cap, and everything else designed by the NFL to
create parity, the Patriots have won nearly 8 out of every 10 games for eight years.
I'm guessing if Bill Belichick had showered Tom Brady with all those offensive
weapons the so-called experts say he desperately needs, the Patriots would probably
be undefeated. (wink, wink)


The issue of Belichick depriving his Hall of Fame quarterback of talent around him
seemed to rear its ugly head after the Kansas City Chiefs embarrassed the team on
national television September 29. Steve Young, the ESPN analyst and Hall of Fame
quarterback actually pointed that out before the team got embarrassed by the Chiefs.
So, of course, the Boston media made a big issue of it and one paper went so far as to
post the headline, "In Bill We Trust?"

The media peppered Belichick with questions about not being in a giving mood
when it comes to his franchise quarterback. The Hoodie stiff-arms the media and
drowns negativity better than any coach of the league and out of that press conference
came the phrase, "We're moving onto Cincinnati." which could've been translated as
"Shut the hell up. You have no idea how to construct a football team and I'm not going
to waste my time with you even talking about it."


Yeah, that's right, never trust a guy who has sent the team to five Super Bowls, winning
three of them during an 11-year period. Sure, question the guy who has spent 40 years in
the league breaking down tape, scouting players, devising game plans, and drafting players.
Who the hell should trust a coach with a background like that?

I'm thinking the entire, Belichick hasn't provided Brady with enough weapons around 
him thing, wouldn't be talked about so much if a player with a house full of a different
kind of weapon didn't go off and get arrested for allegedly murdering someone.

Belichick knew all about the background of Aaron Hernandez while the talented inmate
was at the University of Florida. Belichick gambled on him and lost badly. But that was
after Hernandez became a Pro Bowl player with game-changing skills and one of Brady's
most dangerous weapons, no pun intended. Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski, another
player Belichick gifted to Brady, gave the Patriots an unstoppable two-tight end set that
created serious match-up problems for teams around the league. But then a murder
happened. Damn.

There are some Patriots fans who think that when Brady looks out to the right, he should
see Calvin Johnson ready to run a go-route. And when he looks to his left, Brady should
have Larry Fitzgerald about to run up the seam to catch a bomb. Sorry, it doesn't exactly
work that way, especially when the Patriots almost always draft near the bottom of league
because their record is always so good. The truly great receivers in the draft are gone
within the first 10 picks and there aren't ones out on the street who will make much of
a difference.

It's almost ironic that a region that can never forget about Babe Ruth, the ball going
through Buckner's leg, or the Bruins having too many men on the ice, can't seem to
remember all the weapons Belichick has provided Brady with.

In 2007, nobody outside of Mel Kiper, Jr. ever really heard of Wes Welker. He was
just a diminutive receiver playing in obscurity for the Miami Dolphins. Belichick,
for some reason, thought he could flourish playing with Brady and pried him away
from South Florida for the equivalent of a bag of used footballs. Would anyone say
that Welker didn't have All-Pro talent in New England?


So, at one time, Brady had Welker, Gronkowski, and Hernandez on the field at the
same time to throw to. Man, Brady was really deprived. Belichick also presented
Brady with the versatility of Julian Edelman, who was a friggin' quarterback in college.
The "mintron" caught more than 100 passes last year. Belichick let Welker walk
and Edelman ended up having more catches than him. Now, it appears Welker is
far closer to retirement than the All-Pro he was in New England. Belichick has long
lived by the motto that it's always better to cut, trade, or release a player one year
too soon, rather than one year too late.

In Bill We Trust? Nah, he doesn't know what he's doing.

Since 2002, Belichick has acquired some major gifts and talent for Tom to be terrific.
He fleeced Cincinnati and Oakland for Corey Dillon and Randy Moss, respectively.
Belichick drafted Deion Branch and Kevin Faulk,signed Danny Woodhead, Brandon
LaFell and traded for Tim Wright Yep, that's right. All those guys had/have no talent
and not good enough for Brady.Seriously?


You can't say Belichick hasn't tried to surround Brady with talent over the years.
He signed Ochocinco and even Brady's former teammate at Michigan, David Terrell.
Both couldn't understand the playbook or do the one thing they were acquired to
do: catch the damn ball. Yes, the Hoodie whiffed on those guys, but he tried.

Belichick doesn't have a perfect draft record. Nobody does. Bill Walsh sure didn't.
He passed on Brady and drafted some guy named Giovanni Carmozzi from that
national powerhouse, Hofstra. There have been a lot of misses, but drafting is an
inexact science. It happens. 10 teams passed on J.J. Watt. Brady was the 199th player
picked in the draft. Nobody, not even Belichick thought Brady was going to turn out
the way he did.

For all this talk about Belichick not providing Brady with significant talent, they
still have won three Super Bowls together. Bill Polian, the former GM of the Colts,
gifted Peyton Manning with enormous talent like Reggie Wayne, Dallas Clark,
Edgerrin James, and Marvin Harrison. For all those explosive weapons, how
many rings do Manning and the Colts have? One. One measly ring. Belichick
must know just a little about what he's doing, no?

Belichick rarely drafts a wide receiver in the first-round or showers a free-agent
one with a lucrative contract. He's never believed in it and who can argue with
him. He's not like a baseball GM who rewards players with $100 million contracts
for what they've done instead of what they will do in the future.  MLB is loaded
with stupid contracts for players who will never attain the success they once had.


Once again, the Patriots appear to be on the road to the Super Bowl. They have one
of the best offenses in the league and apparently, they've done it without giving
Brady any weapons to throw to. Sure.

The next time anyone in the media or the New England fan base questions whether
or not the game has passed Belichick by and he can't be trusted, just do what
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie often does: Tell them to sit down and shut up.

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