The Value of Belichick

TheoShmeo

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Good Flutie interview with Rich Eisen

That was well worth the listen.

Flutie's comments at the end about Tom Brady always acknowledging the contributions of everyone around him were interesting though not particularly surprising. And for those who have not clicked on the link, Flutie's major point on BB was that his ability to assimilate all of the information gathered for him from quotes of opposing players and coaches was extraordinary and often directly impacted the game plan.

Not that we need this, but Flutie's comments serve as one more reminder that the annual whining of Boston media members regarding Belichick's bland press conferences are total horseshit.
 

tims4wins

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That was well worth the listen.

Flutie's comments at the end about Tom Brady always acknowledging the contributions of everyone around him were interesting though not particularly surprising. And for those who have not clicked on the link, Flutie's major point on BB was that his ability to assimilate all of the information gathered for him from quotes of opposing players and coaches was extraordinary and often directly impacted the game plan.

Not that we need this, but Flutie's comments serve as one more reminder that the annual whining of Boston media members regarding Belichick's bland press conferences are total horseshit.
I have to take Flutie's comments about the game plan with a grain of salt though. Typically most players will have a Monday interview, but nothing on Tuesday, and the game plan is usually in on Wednesday. As much of a BB fanboy as I am, I find it hard to believe BB was using opponents' players' quotes to formulate game plans.
 

TheoShmeo

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I have to take Flutie's comments about the game plan with a grain of salt though. Typically most players will have a Monday interview, but nothing on Tuesday, and the game plan is usually in on Wednesday. As much of a BB fanboy as I am, I find it hard to believe BB was using opponents' players' quotes to formulate game plans.
I don't think it takes being a huge BB fan to believe Flutie on BB's use of player and coach comments. One, I'm not sure what Flutie has to gain by saying it if it isn't true. Two, that BB and his players studiously avoid commenting on anything real suggests that Belichick knows first hand that even the most innocuous seeming information can be used. Three, I've often thought that I was hearing or reading comments that provide a vista into how the other team was preparing; that BB would make use of the same is not surprising. Four, and I hate to even indirectly invoke SpyGate, but using all available information and means of gathering it is something we've seen all along. Belichick leaves no stone unturned.
 

Bowhemian

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I have to take Flutie's comments about the game plan with a grain of salt though. Typically most players will have a Monday interview, but nothing on Tuesday, and the game plan is usually in on Wednesday. As much of a BB fanboy as I am, I find it hard to believe BB was using opponents' players' quotes to formulate game plans.
He can get quotes from teams throughout the season though, not just the week prior to their games
 

tims4wins

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I don't think it takes being a huge BB fan to believe Flutie on BB's use of player and coach comments. One, I'm not sure what Flutie has to gain by saying it if it isn't true. Two, that BB and his players studiously avoid commenting on anything real suggests that Belichick knows first hand that even the most innocuous seeming information can be used. Three, I've often thought that I was hearing or reading comments that provide a vista into how the other team was preparing; that BB would make use of the same is not surprising. Four, and I hate to even indirectly invoke SpyGate, but using all available information and means of gathering it is something we've seen all along. Belichick leaves no stone unturned.
I don't necessarily disagree with any of this, but I do wonder exactly how much visibility Flutie had. Maybe it's all true.
 

simplyeric

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I don't necessarily disagree with any of this, but I do wonder exactly how much visibility Flutie had. Maybe it's all true.
Seems like BB is the kindof guy who would not only use those comments, he’d disseminate the info widely, and he’d also use it as a continuous lesson as to why players shouldn’t talk much.

‘Ok guys, Joey Blabbermouth x about y three weeks ago. So here’s the tape. Here’s x. Here’s y. Flutie, you got this? Yeah? Ok. Ok guys and this is another example of why we don’t chat about stuff, right?
Do your job. Your job does not include taking.
Ok uphill sprints for for the lot of you. Don’t stand and gawk like you’ve never seen the hand of god before...’.
 

InstaFace

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Papelbon's Poutine

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That was well worth the listen.

Flutie's comments at the end about Tom Brady always acknowledging the contributions of everyone around him were interesting though not particularly surprising. And for those who have not clicked on the link, Flutie's major point on BB was that his ability to assimilate all of the information gathered for him from quotes of opposing players and coaches was extraordinary and often directly impacted the game plan.

Not that we need this, but Flutie's comments serve as one more reminder that the annual whining of Boston media members regarding Belichick's bland press conferences are total horseshit.
Sorry, I don't see a link...help?
 

Super Nomario

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I can't remember the thread where @PedroKsBambino and I and some other were talking about Belichick and analytics however many moons ago, but I thought this Athletic article by Mike Lombardi was interesting:

Basically he says analytics is just information, and the key is having a "computer" that can process that information - Lombardi sees Belichick (and Bill Walsh before him) as basically that computer:

Working for Bill Walsh or Bill Belichick, I was never the decision-maker. My role was to feed them the information, to make sure the information was trustworthy and then let them use their vast knowledge of the game as well as their program to make the right decisions. They were the IBM computer, capable of always making great decisions for their respected teams. I honestly believe to this day that Walsh and Belichick could never make a wrong decision, I could only give them bad information. Decisions were comfortable for both men; getting the right information at times proved more challenging. Today in the technology age, acquiring the correct data is harder than ever.
He goes on to say that the Browns' problem isn't analytics, but that they don't have anyone capable of interpreting the information properly; they have guys like Paul DePodesta who don't have expert knowledge parsing through information that they don't really understand.
 

PedroKsBambino

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Thanks for sharing, and reinforces the thesis I was putting forward: Belichick is certainly using analytic data as part of what he assesses, but he makes decisions based on a variety of factors (first and foremost, his decades of experience). I think, as Lombardi says, framing the question as whether someone is "Sashi Brown using nothing else" or "not using analytics" is an unhelpful false dichotomy.
 

Silverdude2167

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Thanks for sharing, and reinforces the thesis I was putting forward: Belichick is certainly using analytic data as part of what he assesses, but he makes decisions based on a variety of factors (first and foremost, his decades of experience). I think, as Lombardi says, framing the question as whether someone is "Sashi Brown using nothing else" or "not using analytics" is an unhelpful false dichotomy.
This makes sense to me and I think a great example was the Balt/Tenn game. I don't think Bill would have ever gone for on from his 45 down 7 in Q1 to an inferior opponent.

I don't care that analytics tell you to go or even that you are like 80% on the year going for it on 4th and 1. The only way you are losing that game is by getting behind big and putting your team that is not really designed to play from behind in a hole.
Win probability went from 50/50 to 60/40 Titans after the next play TD, the analytics said it was unlikely this would happen, but the coach should know that the benefit is not worth the risk of failure based on qualitative factors.
 

DJnVa

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Former Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount
I’ve got some good ones, but I don’t know if I want to tell them. There’s a story, but I don’t know if I want to tell it until I officially retire. We were playing a game and were up by 10 or more points. One of our guys – I won’t call out names – caught a pass, and I don’t know if he fumbled the ball out bounds or stepped out of bounds in time. But we watched the film the next day. (Belichick) was like, “Hey, I know it’s all about you. I know this is what you want to do. Everything is about you.” Then he pointed to the football with the (laser) light and was like, “This is a team sport. Think about everyone else on the team besides yourself for once. You’re being a …” I’ll cut it short there. That’s the PG-rated story. That’s the best part I can give you. Bill is my guy.
We should track this down.
 

InstaFace

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I don't even get where he's going with that story. That's just Bill preaching ball security? Or there was an incident that was reviewed and he got safely out of bounds before fumbling, but just barely, but not enough for Bill?
 

DJnVa

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I don't even get where he's going with that story. That's just Bill preaching ball security? Or there was an incident that was reviewed and he got safely out of bounds before fumbling, but just barely, but not enough for Bill?
I'm thinking it's a combo of ball security and if they were leading late in the game, probably a player going out of bounds to avoid the big hit and stopping clock.

But it's Blount so while the details might be sketchy on the play, I would assume the BB rant is not.
 

ElcaballitoMVP

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Maybe it's just me, but I really think Belichick loves his job.
Ya think? The guy is hanging out in the rain at Middle Tenn State looking at a red shirt senior who had 3.5 sacks last year.

Also goes to show you these guys have a crapload of work they have to do. While we're focused on the top 10-20 guys at a certain position leading up to the draft, Bill is out looking at undrafted free agents to scoop up.
 

BaseballJones

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Ya think? The guy is hanging out in the rain at Middle Tenn State looking at a red shirt senior who had 3.5 sacks last year.

Also goes to show you these guys have a crapload of work they have to do. While we're focused on the top 10-20 guys at a certain position leading up to the draft, Bill is out looking at undrafted free agents to scoop up.
On a serious note, it feels like this kind of puts to bed that old saw that gets thrown out there that BB will retire when Brady does. I mean, does this look like a guy REMOTELY interested in retiring?
 

ElcaballitoMVP

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On a serious note, it feels like this kind of puts to bed that old saw that gets thrown out there that BB will retire when Brady does. I mean, does this look like a guy REMOTELY interested in retiring?
Agreed, he's not going anywhere. I think the challenge of winning one without Brady would absolutely be something he'd be willing to take on.
 

Captaincoop

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Six Super Bowls. What is left for a fan to need?

I don't want to see him on any other team. Another trophy isn't worth seeing him in a Chargers hoodie. As long as he wants to coach, I don't want him on any other team.

So, there is no price.

And I don't feel that way about any other player or coach on any other team. I root for the laundry. But, this is different.

Edit: Except for Papi maybe. I don't think there is any price at which I would have been ok with Papi being a Yankee.
Correct.
 

BigSoxFan

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That is awesome. Substitute those 80’s names with your favorite offensive Pats of the last 20 years. Makes you have faith they can keep finding more.
That QB write up really is Brady down to the letter.
 

nattysez

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That QB write up really is Brady down to the letter.
It's interesting that he thinks it's essential to have a pass-catching TE, even if the TE can't block, while a blocking TE is a secondary need. That really stood out to me.
 

Dollar

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It's interesting that he thinks it's essential to have a pass-catching TE, even if the TE can't block, while a blocking TE is a secondary need. That really stood out to me.
It makes a lot of sense if you think about his roster construction over the years.

2000-01 receiving Wiggins, blocking Rutledge
2002-04 receiving Fauria, blocking Graham/Cleeland
2004-09 receiving Watson, blocking Graham/Brady/Baker
2010-12 receiving Hernandez, blocking Gronkowski
2013-19 dual-threat GRONK

Gronk became such an amazing once-in-a-generation player that he kind of threw things out of whack for about a decade, but Belichick's preference of having a dedicated receiving TE and a blocking-focused TE is nothing new.
 

Euclis20

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It makes a lot of sense if you think about his roster construction over the years.

2000-01 receiving Wiggins, blocking Rutledge
2002-04 receiving Fauria, blocking Graham/Cleeland
2004-09 receiving Watson, blocking Graham/Brady/Baker
2010-12 receiving Hernandez, blocking Gronkowski
2013-19 dual-threat GRONK

Gronk became such an amazing once-in-a-generation player that he kind of threw things out of whack for about a decade, but Belichick's preference of having a dedicated receiving TE and a blocking-focused TE is nothing new.
Agreed, although I like that you have Gronk as a blocking TE from 2010-2012, a period in which he averaged 70 catches, 991 yards and 14 TDs per 16 games.
 

SMU_Sox

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The non-blocking TE #1 surprised me given that Watson was taken in the first as was Graham and both of them offered some blocking and receiving (balanced). I might be misremembering either of them - that's possible. The 235 pound minimum also shocked me given his preference for guys over 250.

It also doesn't vibe with what Mike Lombardi has said about the Pats and tight ends, that Bill likes bigger guys who can block well and didn't like Irv Smith Jr. or Noah Fant. That the key was having a TE who could do both because that is how you exploit mismatches.

That QB write up really is Brady down to the letter.
And why we are never going to draft Jordan Love who seems to be a popular mock for us. He's an awful decision maker.
 

BigSoxFan

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Agreed, SMU. I don’t see Love as a fit at all. If he’s somehow there at #23, I think we feign interest but trade down, assuming there’s nobody else available we want to jump at.
 

j44thor

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The non-blocking TE #1 surprised me given that Watson was taken in the first as was Graham and both of them offered some blocking and receiving (balanced). I might be misremembering either of them - that's possible. The 235 pound minimum also shocked me given his preference for guys over 250.

It also doesn't vibe with what Mike Lombardi has said about the Pats and tight ends, that Bill likes bigger guys who can block well and didn't like Irv Smith Jr. or Noah Fant. That the key was having a TE who could do both because that is how you exploit mismatches.



And why we are never going to draft Jordan Love who seems to be a popular mock for us. He's an awful decision maker.
235 in 91 is probably 250+ in 2000s +.
It was interesting that he wanted big OL that could run over people vs smaller technicians. It appears to me that over the years that Scar worked best with smaller guys, Thuney was sub 300 when drafted, Mason & Wynn just over 300, Matt Light wasn't a monster nor was Solder. Seems like he shifted his tune a bit there perhaps to account for more teams switching from 3-4 to 4-3?
 

Super Nomario

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It makes a lot of sense if you think about his roster construction over the years.

2000-01 receiving Wiggins, blocking Rutledge
2002-04 receiving Fauria, blocking Graham/Cleeland
2004-09 receiving Watson, blocking Graham/Brady/Baker
2010-12 receiving Hernandez, blocking Gronkowski
2013-19 dual-threat GRONK

Gronk became such an amazing once-in-a-generation player that he kind of threw things out of whack for about a decade, but Belichick's preference of having a dedicated receiving TE and a blocking-focused TE is nothing new.
Other than Watson and the contract he ultimately handed Hernandez, he didn't invest in any of these receiving guys, though. Wiggins and Fauria were scrapheap pickups, Hernandez was a day three draft pick. And they've totally ignored the idea of a receiving TE since benching Tim Wright down the stretch in 2014 and seemed to have very little interest in the undersized spread-type TEs who don't block.

235 in 91 is probably 250+ in 2000s +.
It was interesting that he wanted big OL that could run over people vs smaller technicians. It appears to me that over the years that Scar worked best with smaller guys, Thuney was sub 300 when drafted, Mason & Wynn just over 300, Matt Light wasn't a monster nor was Solder. Seems like he shifted his tune a bit there perhaps to account for more teams switching from 3-4 to 4-3?
That is an interesting observation. If there's one coach where Belichick would defer his preferences to what that coach wanted, it's Scarnecchia.

(FWIW I don't know that Scar really has a type; even among the guys you list, Solder was a little slender but super tall with long arms, while the others were guys with shorter arms and great footwork. Vollmer and Trent Brown were huge dudes. Cannon and Cam Fleming are shorter and heavier than you expect with tackles. Wendell and Andrews are two more tiny guys. It did seem like they were going with more size - Jordan Devey, Cannon and Fleming inside, Halapio, Ryan Groy - when DeGuglielmo was there, though Scar was still involved with scouting)
 

bakahump

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Of course we are reading a document of an opinion/philosophy from 1991. I suspect its possible that BBs opinion has changed. "Yeah in 1991 i thought I wanted a 235 lb TE who was more a motion guy and then a separate blocking guy, but now I realize that having a dual threat, Ideally the best ever in Rob, but even a guy who is only average at both is a much better weapon."
 

5dice

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Besides the player templates being discussed, the "work the middle of the field first" also rings true with lots of runs up the middle and guard, short passing to Edelman, Welker, White, etc over the middle and long seam type passes down the middle to Gronk, Hogan, etc...
 

Captaincoop

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The non-blocking TE #1 surprised me given that Watson was taken in the first as was Graham and both of them offered some blocking and receiving (balanced). I might be misremembering either of them - that's possible. The 235 pound minimum also shocked me given his preference for guys over 250.

It also doesn't vibe with what Mike Lombardi has said about the Pats and tight ends, that Bill likes bigger guys who can block well and didn't like Irv Smith Jr. or Noah Fant. That the key was having a TE who could do both because that is how you exploit mismatches.



And why we are never going to draft Jordan Love who seems to be a popular mock for us. He's an awful decision maker.

Surprised me as well - when he gave that talk (or wrote the piece?) he was just finishing up a 5-6 year run with Mark Bavaro as a key piece of those Giants teams, albeit on the other side of the ball. Another TE who was a significant receiving weapon and a strong blocker.
 

InstaFace

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Agreed, although I like that you have Gronk as a blocking TE from 2010-2012, a period in which he averaged 70 catches, 991 yards and 14 TDs per 16 games.
A lot of that had to do with Gronk's insane YAC abilities playing through contact, but frankly Herbnandez was always a better receiver and more elusive runner... until it came to running from the law.

What could have been, huh? Never a truer prediction than Urban Meyer saying he'd either end up in the Hall of Fame or in prison.
 

InstaFace

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Possible the wrong thread, but ESPN just re-published this 2016 deep dive into BB today, and I'll read (or re-read) anything about the man: