Thoughts/Impressions on “The Dynasty” Apple TV Series

The Talented Allen Ripley

holden
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This entire discussion is fucking insane. Maybe random RB X runs better than Michel. Maybe he runs worse. Maybe they trade for or sign someone else. Maybe they run different plays with different personnel. Maybe any one of infinite other possibilities comes to pass.
Maybe. Maybe not. Maybe go fuck yourself.
 

sezwho

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This is the outlier, but given that (a) we have no idea what really happened, and (b) the entirety of the rest of BB's HC career with the Patriots is that he does what he thinks is best for the team, I have to believe that even in the Butler case, he did what he thought was best for the team.

As difficult as that is for me to fathom.
I don’t think refusing to speak to your starting quarterback (who you decide has betrayed you) is operating in the best interest of your team. It’s more like indulging your absolute power at the expense team success, and as we now know this extended beyond Mac to Tom Brady himself.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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The question is not whether Belichick made a correct choice. It's not even whether he made an objectively reasonable choice.

The question is whether he genuinely, subjectively believed that his choice was in the best interest of the club. Because when you accuse him of making a "personal" decision, that is the proposition you're trying to subtly challenge.
 

NomarsFool

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But nobody is going to buy a claim that Belichick makes decisions other than for what he believes is the best interests of the club. Whatever one can say about him, if you are going to make that claim you really better have receipts. He may get it wrong, but I don’t think anyone in football would believe that wasn’t always his long-term intention without something other than speculation.
I'm firmly of the belief that BB could have done something that wasn't in the best interest of the football team, absolutely. He's a human being. But, as you said, you'd better have receipts. What's weird is that Butler himself has said he has no idea - which is honestly a bit hard to understand. Unless Butler has an idea of what it could be, but doesn't want to speculate because it would be embarassing to Butler and why speculate and share that? It seems like no one in the Patriots' locker room has any idea why Butler was benched. So, how in the world would Kraft know? And Kraft didn't say that BB told him the reason, and that Kraft disagreed with it. He just seems to be speculating based on hearsay.

It's just overall a bit of a weird hatchet job, for no real apparent reason. It would sort of make sense if Kraft was worried about backlash from potentially having to fire Bill, and planted these seeds thinking they would come out right after firing BB (or right before). It's just a bit weird, to me, to slander him so bad on the way out the door - after all he has done for the organization. Kraft may 100% be right and BB did bench Butler because he ate the last Pop Tart in the team break room. Even so, I would probably just keep that to myself.
 

Myt1

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It's just a bit weird, to me, to slander him so bad on the way out the door - after all he has done for the organization.
The Sox did it to Tito on his way out the door, too. It’s probably a combination of personal legend-building through diminishing the other contributor, and legitimate sore feelings and jealousy.
 

djbayko

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View: https://twitter.com/BenVolin/status/1770127346370056339


Not a surprise in the slightest. The agenda was clear.
Welcome to the world of TV editing. I don’t know anyone who’s participated in a TV production who didn’t come away disappointed with how they were portrayed (including myself).

Somewhat related, I was recently interviewed for an article in the NYTimes and, based on my experience, I got them to agree up front that I would have the ability to review the article before it was published. Thank god I did, because they twisted my words, made some stuff up out of whole cloth, and included details the author had promised to leave out. It’s a tough business. I demanded that they change some things or I would pull out.
 

BaseballJones

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Welcome to the world of TV editing. I don’t know anyone who’s participated in a TV production who didn’t come away disappointed with how they were portrayed (including myself).

Somewhat related, I was recently interviewed for an article in the NYTimes and, based on my experience, I got them to agree up front that I would have the ability to review the article before it was published. Thank god I did, because they twisted my words, made some stuff up out of whole cloth, and included details the author had promised to leave out. It’s a tough business. I demanded that they change some things or I would pull out.
For my book 53rd Man, I wanted to make sure I told the story correctly, and with all the guys I interviewed, I told them I would (a) record all our interviews so when I quoted them, we'd both know it was verbatim, and (b) I'd give them a copy of the manuscript, whereby I'd request that they look it over and make sure it was a fair rendering of what they said. I wanted them to totally trust my process.

So that's how I've approached it as a writer - it was the same for another magazine article I wrote recently. I really want to make sure that I'm accurately representing what they say.

Of course as a writer you have to make editorial judgments - not enough space to use everything they talk about, but that's why I show them the manuscript first before it goes to the publisher. They have a chance to sign off on it and approve it. I really want to do right by them.

To me, this is simple journalistic integrity.
 

k-factory

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The failure in the storytelling is really in failing to bolster the themes that made up the dynasty. Too much emphasis on the granular drama half of which was unsatisfactory rehashing (deflategate etc).
For BB in particular you really come away with the surly, stubborn villain that everyone had to put up with.
But the flip side of that stubbornness was his perseverance. Plenty of soul crushing moments over the course of 20 years that would cause any normal person to quit but the guy kept coming back with his eyes on the prize giving max effort. And his team fed off that.
That degree of perseverance is so rare and a defining theme of the dynasty.
Kraft was very lucky to have 2 guys like that in the run.
-Talent recognition
-Perseverance
-Luck
Those themes are there but muddied by a number of ham handed tangents.
 

PedroKsBambino

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having now watched the full series the biggest surprise is that Mike Kensil somehow isn’t credited as the writer and editor for it.

On BB, he’s the greatest football coach there has ever been. And I have little doubt that he’s a tough, cold guy as well. I find it very easy to believe that he’s not fun to play for, and also that part of his success is that iron will to do what he believes will help the team succeed.

Tom Brady is the greatest football player there has ever been. His competitiveness is insane - his drive even more insane. He grew over his time with the Pats from a 23 or something year old who drank beer in the basement to a thoughtful (whether or not I always agree) independent guy. And he remained completely in fear of failing, of losing, of being replaced. And so eventually he walked.

Those guys are complex packages—what they did together has never been done before, and they held it together longer than any similar pair in any sport. That it broke apart at the end isn’t surprising, they are incredibly competitive, complex individuals with egos, drive, and desire to succeed that allowed them their success. Eventually, things were going to change. More than anything, for me, it speaks to something in each of them that they made it work for so long—-think about how quickly Theo/LL, Pedro/Sox, etc. broke apart. The ability to adjust, to grow, to change, to evolve as the game and team changed was a critical enabler of each of their success. But they are both human, and only so malleable. And so eventually it ended.

Thank you to both for what they did, and while this documentary is a travishamockery to Kraft as well….who believed in BB when no one else did and who was ultimately the guy who put his ego aside until the end (when, this documentary shows, he let it out).
 

Anthologos

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having now watched the full series the biggest surprise is that Mike Kensil somehow isn’t credited as the writer and editor for it.

On BB, he’s the greatest football coach there has ever been. And I have little doubt that he’s a tough, cold guy as well. I find it very easy to believe that he’s not fun to play for, and also that part of his success is that iron will to do what he believes will help the team succeed.
Thank you to both for what they did, and while this documentary is a travishamockery to Kraft as well….who believed in BB when no one else did and who was ultimately the guy who put his ego aside until the end (when, this documentary shows, he let it out).
I like this take as much or more than any on this thread. And deep down it’s a shame they couldnt have captured this dynamic in vitro, rough and smooth, raw and cooked. These were two of the greatest competitors to ever play and succeed in the NFL. And they did it for a generation.

for the posters who regret that BB’s spiteful pigheadedness cost them and Brady another five or six Lombardis….I dont know what to say. I guess BB just didnt want to buy a bigger boat, the bastard.

but it’s a shame, to me, that the director wasnt better at this job…too young? Too callow? Too distant? I dont know. I liked a lot of it…but it could have been better. There was just more at stake.

edit: i seem to have butchered my editing of PKB’s original, which meant to highlight what he said about Brady too. Sorry. I just wanted to clip it for length. Im a lousy documentarian too.
 

PedroKsBambino

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I like this take as much or more than any on this thread. And deep down it’s a shame they couldnt have captured this dynamic in vitro, rough and smooth, raw and cooked. These were two of the greatest competitors to ever play and succeed in the NFL. And they did it for a generation.

for the posters who regret that BB’s spiteful pigheadedness cost them and Brady another five or six Lombardis….I dont know what to say. I guess BB just didnt want to buy a bigger boat, the bastard.

but it’s a shame, to me, that the director wasnt better at this job…too young? Too callow? Too distant? I dont know. I liked a lot of it…but it could have been better. There was just more at stake.

edit: i seem to have butchered my editing of PKB’s original, which meant to highlight what he said about Brady too. Sorry. I just wanted to clip it for length. Im a lousy documentarian too.
I get being angry at BB for forcing Brady to leave. But let's face it---the odds are no other coach would have kept Brady as a fourth quarterback or kept him as starter when Bledsoe got healthy, let alone teach him all the rest of it. So there just is not Tom Brady without BB, even if by the end Brady arguably was even more valuable than BB.

I also think the point about elevation from the director/writer made above is a great one - this is an epic story with elevated themes about success, passion, competitiveness, ego. And it needs someone who can storytell at that level....Fincher, Sorkin, Ken Burns, etc....I just don't think this guy can get there, and so it became a far more tactical, gossipy story that missed the really fascinating bigger themes.
 

Anthologos

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I get being angry at BB for forcing Brady to leave. But let's face it---the odds are no other coach would have kept Brady as a fourth quarterback or kept him as starter when Bledsoe got healthy, let alone teach him all the rest of it. So there just is not Tom Brady without BB, even if by the end Brady arguably was even more valuable than BB.

I also think the point about elevation from the director/writer made above is a great one - this is an epic story with elevated themes about success, passion, competitiveness, ego. And it needs someone who can storytell at that level....Fincher, Sorkin, Ken Burns, etc....I just don't think this guy can get there, and so it became a far more tactical, gossipy story that missed the really fascinating bigger themes.
What i didnt add, but should have, is that these two men (Kraft aside for the moment) were also two of the smartest competitors to do it. There is no story of BB which does not acknowledge, even if the teller dislikes him, that he is a football savant. There are coaches, there are winning coaches, there are multiple SB-winning coaches….and then there is Bill Belichick, diagramming army-navy plays from 1952. He is the Einstein of the gridiron. He is a freak, a phenomenon, maybe a horror. But He is a football genius.

Then you have brady, who is a leadership genius. He is the Tony Robbins of pigskin. He could get guys to walk on coals. He could get opposing players, in the fucking Super Bowl, to say things like “yeah they have to walk on lava, but it’s tom brady…so”. And they saw it happen. And we did. Over and over again. The man was a freak of his making, but he inspired players like Patton.

to have those two once-in-a-liftime heroes/personas is something that deserves a certain degree of hosannas, not just “ho-lee fucks”.

(whether andy and pat get there…who knows. Not about them)

The person who is missing from all of this that I wish could have been involved but he’s long dead is Halberstam. What a consultant. He would have grasped the generational angle, the best and the brightest angle…

Coda: and who the fuck makes this kind of film and doesnt let Gronk go wild? That guy was a folk hero. A natural goofball and a sherman tank on the field. Whatvthe hell happened there.
 

Anthologos

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Oh i know. I love that book.

but that was about steve B, right.

i wish he could have written another now….

Edit: can’t imagine the bastard college student who fucked up and killed him accidentally. What a sad life. Halberstam was one of the absolute greats.
Anyone who could write Best and the Brightest and Summer of ‘49 and the Fifties: as an historian, i can say—three very different books—is a miracle.
 

rodderick

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I get being angry at BB for forcing Brady to leave. But let's face it---the odds are no other coach would have kept Brady as a fourth quarterback or kept him as starter when Bledsoe got healthy, let alone teach him all the rest of it. So there just is not Tom Brady without BB, even if by the end Brady arguably was even more valuable than BB.

I also think the point about elevation from the director/writer made above is a great one - this is an epic story with elevated themes about success, passion, competitiveness, ego. And it needs someone who can storytell at that level....Fincher, Sorkin, Ken Burns, etc....I just don't think this guy can get there, and so it became a far more tactical, gossipy story that missed the really fascinating bigger themes.
So I guess there's no Bill without Kraft and he actually is the one most responsible for the dynasty after all because no other owner was trading a first round pick for Bill Belichick at that time either.
 

wilked

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So I guess there's no Bill without Kraft and he actually is the one most responsible for the dynasty after all because no other owner was trading a first round pick for Bill Belichick at that time either.
The real heroes:

 

Bowhemian

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I get being angry at BB for forcing Brady to leave. But let's face it---the odds are no other coach would have kept Brady as a fourth quarterback or kept him as starter when Bledsoe got healthy, let alone teach him all the rest of it. So there just is not Tom Brady without BB, even if by the end Brady arguably was even more valuable than BB.

I also think the point about elevation from the director/writer made above is a great one - this is an epic story with elevated themes about success, passion, competitiveness, ego. And it needs someone who can storytell at that level....Fincher, Sorkin, Ken Burns, etc....I just don't think this guy can get there, and so it became a far more tactical, gossipy story that missed the really fascinating bigger themes.
BB forced Brady to leave? Interesting. Last I knew it was Brady who requested to be a free agent after his last contract year.
 

Van Everyman

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So I guess there's no Bill without Kraft and he actually is the one most responsible for the dynasty after all because no other owner was trading a first round pick for Bill Belichick at that time either.
There wasn’t.

I think posters who are defensive of Bill (understandable) and sore at Kraft for moving on from him (perhaps also understandable) have sort of reduced this story into “Kraft lucked into having the greatest coach and player ever.” Which is just not the case. Nobody, not even Jonathan really, wanted Belichick coaching this team other than Kraft.

Kraft also spent a ton of energy “trying to hold it together” – but not just at the end. He handled all of Brady’s contracts personally and was the one who got Brady to consistently take less so they could sign other guys.

Kraft also promised Brady that “out clause” in the early 2010’s – telling Brady that when the time came when he wanted to leave that Kraft wouldn’t stop him. That he didn’t trigger it for another ~8 years or so is kind of remarkable given all the shit the documentary cites—Hernandez, Jimmy G, DFG, the suspension, 2017, etc.—and not a coincidence.

When you add in the nearly 20 years it took to buy the team and wrest it out from the terrible spot it was in, it is super clear:

Without Kraft there’s no Belichick.

Without Belichick there’s no Brady.

Without Brady, there are no 6 titles.

Without any of them there’s no dynasty.

/fin
 

rodderick

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There wasn’t.

I think posters who are defensive of Bill (understandable) and sore at Kraft for moving on from him (perhaps also understandable) have sort of reduced this story into “Kraft lucked into having the greatest coach and player ever.” Which is just not the case. Nobody, not even Jonathan really, wanted Belichick coaching this team other than Kraft.

Kraft also spent a ton of energy “trying to hold it together” – but not just at the end. He handled all of Brady’s contracts personally and was the one who got Brady to consistently take less so they could sign other guys.

Kraft also promised Brady that “out clause” in the early 2010’s – telling Brady that when the time came when he wanted to leave that Kraft wouldn’t stop him. That he didn’t trigger it for another ~8 years or so is kind of remarkable given all the shit the documentary cites—Hernandez, Jimmy G, DFG, the suspension, 2017, etc.—and not a coincidence.

When you add in the nearly 20 years it took to buy the team and wrest it out from the terrible spot it was in, it is super clear:

Without Kraft there’s no Belichick.

Without Belichick there’s no Brady.

Without Brady, there are no 6 titles.

Without any of them there’s no dynasty.

/fin
Eh, I just think this is a thoroughly uninteresting, if inarguably correct, way to look at it. But I don't want to steer the conversation into "talk radio fodder" or whatever, just find it interesting that there's no "Chiefs way" or people endlessly praising Clark Hunt for KC's success.
 

Silverdude2167

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I just find it interesting that there's no "Chiefs way" or people endlessly praising Clark Hunt for KC's success.
I think this is true because it has always clearly been Mahomes.

The Pats were 3-time champions before Brady became BRADY and were always known for being innovative on Defense, strong on Special Teams, and most of all picking up players off the scrap heap.

The Chiefs are known for having Mahomes...
 

JokersWildJIMED

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I think this is true because it has always clearly been Mahomes.

The Pats were 3-time champions before Brady became BRADY and were always known for being innovative on Defense, strong on Special Teams, and most of all picking up players off the scrap heap.

The Chiefs are known for having Mahomes...
Kinda, but you’re discounting Reid…he’s considered an all-time coach and offensive genius, and the synergy with Mahomes is a perfect storm.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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Kinda, but you’re discounting Reid…he’s considered an all-time coach and offensive genius, and the synergy with Mahomes is a perfect storm.
Reid and Mahomes are really the latest example of the Brady-Belichick experience. Reid more a ton of success in Philly but never got over the hump, lost control of the team in the McNabb-Owens feud, and was eventually ushered out after the complete collapse of the organization. Reid went to KC and won with Alex Smith, but won to the extent of losing divisional playoff games in New England because they weren't in hurry up down 14 points with 60 seconds remaining. Reid gets Mahomes, grooms him like Belichick did with Brady, and punches his ticket to the Hall of Fame.

It's all synergistic.
 

Silverdude2167

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Kinda, but you’re discounting Reid…he’s considered an all-time coach and offensive genius, and the synergy with Mahomes is a perfect storm.
Yeah, but he only won once he had the best QB in the league.

He isn't viewed as someone who takes discarded talent and wins, he takes good to great talent and wins.

If I asked you to describe what the Chiefs way was, what would you say and how does it relate to Reid?

When I think of big Reid moments, it is players lining up offsides or Kelce yelling at him during the last SuperBowl, and if we want to go further back it's poor clock management.

Please note, that I fully acknowledge that Reid is a great coach and probably closing in on the top 10 all-time.
 

Al Zarilla

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Then you have brady, who is a leadership genius. He is the Tony Robbins of pigskin. He could get guys to walk on coals. He could get opposing players, in the fucking Super Bowl, to say things like “yeah they have to walk on lava, but it’s tom brady…so”. And they saw it happen. And we did. Over and over again. The man was a freak of his making, but he inspired players like Patton.
And Brady even willed opposing players to do stupid things and make finishing off a Super Bowl easy.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yLI5jacHAaM
 

PedroKsBambino

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So I guess there's no Bill without Kraft and he actually is the one most responsible for the dynasty after all because no other owner was trading a first round pick for Bill Belichick at that time either.
People get super reactive and reductive about all this, and that's not great.

I personally have no problem giving Kraft a great deal of credit. I think there's no credible description of the dynasty that doesn't say all three of Kraft, BB, and Brady were extraordinary. People often push it to be binary---and I just don't think that is so.

My point was, and remains, that people try to describe "Brady made Belichick" and that just isn't credible given how it started. I also (personally) don't think one can say it is all BB...especially later on (as I said in my post) Brady carried a great deal of the weight. So trying to reduce it to either/or is to me silly.
 

Mystic Merlin

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I don't disagree with Collinsworth re: "From New England's standpoint, you don't throw a punch...at ANYBODY here," BUT: I fucking LOVE GRONK in this moment.
I still don’t understand why in his mind it’s open season for SEA to take personal fouls but it’s catastrophic for the Pats to do so. Seemed over the top to me in the moment, and it still does. At that point SEA needed the Pats to muff a kneel down snap no matter what, as in the incredibly unlikely event the Pats somehow drew the only personal fouls despite Irvin and Bennett flipping out, and Gronk and Hooman were ejected, they’d be snapping from the 3 yard line. The game is over whether they’re at the 3 or the 6 or the 20 yard line. And if the point is that field position matters in the event of a 0.0000001 percent chance of a lost fumble on the kneel down, then isn’t Seattle costing itself 15 yards at least just as bad as the Pats risking a loss of 2-3 yards?
 

tims4wins

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I still don’t understand why in his mind it’s open season for SEA to take personal fouls but it’s catastrophic for the Pats to do so. Seemed over the top to me in the moment, and it still does. At that point SEA needed the Pats to muff a kneel down snap no matter what, as in the incredibly unlikely event the Pats somehow drew the only personal fouls despite Irvin and Bennett flipping out, and Gronk and Hooman were ejected, they’d be snapping from the 3 yard line. The game is over whether they’re at the 3 or the 6 or the 20 yard line. And if the point is that field position matters in the event of a 0.0000001 percent chance of a lost fumble on the kneel down, then isn’t Seattle costing itself 15 yards at least just as bad as the Pats risking a loss of 2-3 yards?
Completely agree. I lost a lot of respect for the Seahawks after that and to me it tainted whatever legacy that era team had. Talk about poor losers. Imagine the reaction if the Pats acted this way after a playoff loss.
 

Al Zarilla

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You always pick up something new to you: watching that Super Bowl back then in real time I missed Collinsworth saying the Patriots had endured the Tyree and Manningham catches, and the scandals, but they avoided another disastrous end in this one. I think I was trying to explain to my wife, who doesn’t watch much football, the whole Malcolm interception, then the penalty making it so much easier, and I missed Collinsworth’s point there. I do like Collinsworth; some here do and some don’t.
 

PedroKsBambino

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Completely agree. I lost a lot of respect for the Seahawks after that and to me it tainted whatever legacy that era team had. Talk about poor losers. Imagine the reaction if the Pats acted this way after a playoff loss.
I agree, and while I certainly understand the incredibly heart-breaking sequence for the Seahawks the way they responded is the worst sore-loser example I can think of in a championship game....ever, in any sport. Can anyone think of something worse than trying to start a brawl with the other team in the last few seconds? It's insane.
 

kenneycb

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I keep thinking the biggest issue was the name of the documentary. It's about the Patriots in the 21st century but it's not about the dynasty, if that makes sense.
 

nighthob

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I watched the Deflategate episode, figuring that would tell me about the series as a whole. After watching it I was quite sad... for Mayo, to be stuck working for the ownership group that would shit all over the guys that made them billions. I hope the Krafts enjoy bringing back the late 80s and early 90s.
 

riboflav

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I keep thinking the biggest issue was the name of the documentary. It's about the Patriots in the 21st century but it's not about the dynasty, if that makes sense.
Makes total sense. It should be called, “The Patriots in the Modern Era” as Kraft sees them?