Since Bill Belichick began his New England Patriots head coaching reign in the year 2000, he has solidified himself as not only one of the top NFL head coaches in today’s game, but one of the greatest coaches in the history of the sport.
With the backing of a superb 190-69 win-loss record since he took the helm of the Patriots, with the addition of four Super Bowl wins, Belichick and his organization have been the model of consistency and envy of many sports teams across all leagues for the past 16 years.
He has turned what seemed to be average players to Pro Bowlers, key contributors, and valuable role players while getting every inch of talent out of all of them.
His prized possession and export just happened to be one of those players who was looked at around the league as just average, but under Belichick became one of the all time greats in his own right, Tom Brady.
For 15 years, Brady has teamed up with Belichick, forming arguably the best Quarterback-Coach duo in league history. With Brady on the field, the Patriots look invincible and have proven themselves to earn every ounce of credit, respect, achievement and hate that they have earned through these 15 years. But now, with Brady off the field for the last of his four game suspension last week, he’s continued to do Belichick a service, only this time, Belichick is the main benefactor of all the praise.
Since Brady had to serve a four game suspension for his role in “Deflategate,” Belichick was put in the rare situation where he didn’t have his star Quarterback to lead his offense and has had to nurture and develop two Quarterbacks this season who would be making the first starts of their respective NFL careers, Jimmy Garoppolo and Jacoby Brissett.
Despite this fact, in typical Belichick and Patriot fashion, he comes out of this Brady-less four game stretch with a 3-1 record and at the top of the AFC East Division.
But the real question is… Should we even be surprised?
I mean this is the same guy who when Brady tore his ACL in 2008, guided a Matt Cassel led offense to an 11-5 record. Matt Cassel is another one product of that Belichick scheme where those who seem average, immensely exceed expectations when playing for the Patriots and make something out of themselves. If you talk to Brady himself, these kind of happenings should be of no surprise to us. In an interview with the Boston Herald, when pressed about whether he felt Belichick was the greatest coach ever, you can definitely assure yourself that he agreed wholeheartedly.
“I think whatever hand he’s been dealt, he finds a way to win,” Brady stated, “Sitting in those meetings for the past 16 years and watching him prepare the team, there’s no [other] coach I’d rather play for.”
Through extreme preparation, a tough, but caring demeanor, and the ability to instill a confidence in his teams like no other even in the most intense of situations, Belichick is the epitome of what a head coach should be. His players go out there on the NFL battlefield knowing that they have been fully developed, fully prepared, and fully confident for battle because their general Belichick is roaming their sidelines.
First time starters Garoppolo and Brisset, even though inexperienced, were prepared for their starts and each executed like veterans. This proves that even if those players aren’t the most talented, they can be put into positions to best contribute based on the talents they do have.
This was shown in the Thursday Night game two weeks ago versus the Houston Texans who were much more talented than the Patriots, but clearly a lot less prepared for battle and they got exposed. This game showed the prowess of Belichick.
Dieter Kurtenbach of Fox Sports News commented on this game and why he believes Belichick is the greatest ever.
“You shouldn’t be allowed to be this dominant in the modern- day NFL,” Kurtenbach said, “but Belichick continues to be head and shoulders above the rest of his coaching peers. Who could question his bid as the best coach in NFL history.”
Preparation, toughness, execution, consistency, confidence… All things which describe the reason why the Patriots have become one of the most storied franchises of all time.
Why? Because they have the greatest coach of all time.
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