Wednesday, January 14, 2015


The Patriots are on the verge of going to their sixth Super Bowl in the Belichick/Brady era,
but their fans have long thought making it to the pinnacle of the sport is an annual rite. That's
cool, but if you're going to be a great sports fan, make sure you go 'all in.' and stick behind
the team when there is a small bump in the road to glory.

On September 29, the Patriots got shellacked and embarrassed by the Kansas City Chiefs on
national television. ESPN analyst Trent Dilfer stated that "The Patriots are just not that good
anymore" and the fans took it hook, line, and sinker.

They started jumping ship as if the entire team was infected with the ebola virus.
Members of the media proclaimed that Bill Belichick had lost his touch on drafting
and signing free-agents, bringing up his record of bad picks and trades. "Why did they
trade Logan Mankins, the second-best lineman in team history for some guy named
Tim Wright?", he must be losing it, they said. "You see, he was too cheap to re-sign
Wes Welker and give Brady the weapons he needs," they cried.

Even Tom Brady, the winningest quarterback in NFL history, wasn't immune from the
criticism. One expert reporter in the crowd was bold (and stupid) enough to ask if the
"quarterback position was going to be evaluated" in the wake of Brady's un-Brady-like
performance against the Chiefs.

All the criticism and questioning was ludicrous, embarrassing, and did nothing but
accentuate how spoiled (and ignorant) the fans and media in New England had become.
The media fell all over themselves trying to get ahead of the curve on the downfall of
Brady and Belichick. The fans in New England did what they do best when their team
doesn't win: complain.

By the way, the loss to the Chiefs put their record at 2-2, which I guess, is blasphemous
in the region that's seen Belichick win 72 percent of his games and go to five Super Bowls.

They seemed to forget the team had gone 56-13 over the past four years and been to
three straight AFC Championship games. (How are those Denver Broncos doing by
the way?)

They seemed to forget that Belichick is the master of adjusting and re-adjusting
his team to the talents they have and the opponents they face.

They seemed to forget the Patriots under Belichick ALWAYS get better as the

And how they forgot about the heart, will, drive, and masterful leadership of Brady is
beyond me. I covered the Patriots every day for two years and saw it. The media and
fans in New England saw it every game for the last 14 years and somehow got amnesia
after one bad game.

Yep, at 37-years old, Brady had lost his 'fastball' and Belichick lost his genius and
somehow didn't surround Brady with weapons like John Elway gave to Manning.
How'd all those weapons work out for them?

Oh, sure, Manning put up mind-boggling stats again, but where is he now and how did
he perform at money time? Manning is nowhere near the quarterback Brady is when the
pressure is on.

Manning wilts, Brady wills himself and the team to win. Is there any doubt about that
after watching Brady lead the team back from two 14-point deficits against a Ravens
team that is always tough on he and the Patriots?

Now, everybody has jumped back on the ship like it's Black Friday at Best Buy. I'm
not sure there's going to be much room on the way to Glendale, but I'm sure there will
be plenty of fans and members of the media who will be saying: "I knew from the start
this team would be going to the Super Bowl. Brady and Belichick are the best."

They most certainly are. Appreciate them, appreciate greatness. Appreciate what they
have done together over the last 14 years. Six Super Bowls? That is unreal. Appreciate
that you live in New England, not Cleveland, Buffalo, Jacksonville, or even Denver.

Enjoy the ride and quit complaining the first time it gets uncomfortable.

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