Thoughts/Impressions on “The Dynasty” Apple TV Series

moonshotmanny

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I found these episodes disappointing, and they left me wishing someone would do a REAL documentary ONLY about the 2007 Patriots.

"Dynasty" totally skipped the fact that the Patriots had already started to slow down late in that season. They barely squeaked past the Giants in the final game of the season 38-35. And two weeks earlier the Jets held them to just 20 points, their lowest total of the season, until they managed just 14 in the Super Bowl. In the AFC Championship game against the Chargers, they scored only 21 and Brady threw 3 interceptions. And hurt his ankle!

So as crushing as it was to lose that Super Bowl, the writing was at least somewhat on the wall. I'd love to see a real documentary that goes in depth on that whole season. It was a fascinating one from start to finish.
Yes, they were definitely not playing as well at the end of the season. I fully expected the Chargers to win that game, and was shocked when they didn't.
 

mcpickl

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It was not mentioned in the Spygate episode, but it always infuriated me that the Pats actually only lost their first-round pick if they made the playoffs in '07. Had they somehow missed the postseason, it would have only been a second-rounder taken away. What kind of punishment is conditioned upon how successful the team is? That made me realize it was more about increasing the degree of difficulty for the Pats going forward than the actual crime.
This never felt strange to me. Just flat penalizing them a 1st round pick early in the season, if some crazy disaster happened and they went 4-12, taking the 5th pick away as a penalty is a whole bunch of degrees different than taking away the 31st pick, when the infraction is exactly the same.

The penalty in this way is consistent. They were basically penalizing them the value of a late 1st round pick. Had they made the playoffs they would've lost their 2nd and 3rd round picks, not just their 2nd, which is fairly close in value to a late 1st rounder.

I think the penalty was way too high, but in my mind the league at least made sure the penalty was consistent. Certainly not infuriating in any way to me.
 

tims4wins

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This never felt strange to me. Just flat penalizing them a 1st round pick early in the season, if some crazy disaster happened and they went 4-12, taking the 5th pick away as a penalty is a whole bunch of degrees different than taking away the 31st pick, when the infraction is exactly the same.

The penalty in this way is consistent. They were basically penalizing them the value of a late 1st round pick. Had they made the playoffs they would've lost their 2nd and 3rd round picks, not just their 2nd, which is fairly close in value to a late 1st rounder.

I think the penalty was way too high, but in my mind the league at least made sure the penalty was consistent. Certainly not infuriating in any way to me.
How do you feel about the conditions placed upon the DFG penalty?
 

Ed Hillel

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I mean, isn’t this exactly how the book went?
It’s how 2007 went, but you have a documentary entitled “Dynasty” and somehow totally gloss over the two teams that went 34-4, including 21 in a row, and won 2 SB? It doesn’t sit right with me. That was arguably the greatest 2 season run in NFL history.
 

Ed Hillel

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They came awfully close to losing at Baltimore, too. They were saved by a timeout.
I was at this game. It was legitimately a very scary atmosphere walking out of that stadium. The visceral anger of the home fans was palpable, and I’ve spoken to a few other fans there who were afraid to be wearing their Pats jerseys walking to their cars.
 

tims4wins

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I don't remember any part of those penalties being conditional? Am I remembering incorrectly?
In the 2008 draft, the Pats had made a trade that netted them the 7th pick. They also held their own pick at 31. The NFL took away the Pats pick, #31.

Not liking that the Pats still had a top 10 pick, they added a stipulation to the DFG penalty that if the Pats traded for another 1st round pick, the league would take away the better of the picks.

There was a lot of BS associated with DFG, and this doesn’t even get remembered. But it was BS.
It’s how 2007 went, but you have a documentary entitled “Dynasty” and somehow totally gloss over the two teams that went 34-4, including 21 in a row, and won 2 SB? It doesn’t sit right with me. That was arguably the greatest 2 season run in NFL history.
I just mean the book was a hagiography of Kraft.
 

mcpickl

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In the 2008 draft, the Pats had made a trade that netted them the 7th pick. They also held their own pick at 31. The NFL took away the Pats pick, #31.

Not liking that the Pats still had a top 10 pick, they added a stipulation to the DFG penalty that if the Pats traded for another 1st round pick, the league would take away the better of the picks.

There was a lot of BS associated with DFG, and this doesn’t even get remembered. But it was BS.

I just mean the book was a hagiography of Kraft.
I don't remember this at all.

So they basically blocked them from trading for a 1st rounder, because the Michael Wilbons of the world were mad the league didn't take the 7th pick away from them for Spygate?

That's truly asinine from the league.
 

tims4wins

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I don't remember this at all.

So they basically blocked them from trading for a 1st rounder, because the Michael Wilbons of the world were mad the league didn't take the 7th pick away from them for Spygate?

That's truly asinine from the league.
That’s correct.

“If the Patriots have more than one selection in either of these rounds, the earlier selection shall be forfeited. The club may not trade or otherwise encumber these selections.”
 

grsharky7

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I was at this game. It was legitimately a very scary atmosphere walking out of that stadium. The visceral anger of the home fans was palpable, and I’ve spoken to a few other fans there who were afraid to be wearing their Pats jerseys walking to their cars.
That was also when the game where Bart Scott launched the penalty flag into the stands at the end. Just to piggy back off leaving an opposing stadium and being legit scared, I felt the same way in 2017 leaving Heinz Field after the Jesse James non catch. I was with a Steeler fan so that made it a little easier, but it was pretty scary leaving that night. Lots of liquored up fans looking for fights,
 

djbayko

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I don't remember this at all.

So they basically blocked them from trading for a 1st rounder, because the Michael Wilbons of the world were mad the league didn't take the 7th pick away from them for Spygate?

That's truly asinine from the league.
It was such a petty maneuver. They basically said the Patriots can’t choose to use their existing assets any way they want — including giving up real value for a first round draft pick.
 

Dotrat

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Yeah, I was thinking the same thing. I know it isn’t meant to be a hi-lite show…but they should have at least mentioned his name as an integral part of the 2007 re-tooling.
Not a single Deion Branch highlight in these two episodes bothered me--he was TB's original mind-meld WR, and a SB MVP to boot.

I miss Scott Pioli even more now--he had genuine insight about the addiction to winning and what Mangini's betrayal in Spygate did to BB. And h/t to @Deathofthebambino--I think the franchise is in excellent hands with Jonathan Kraft going forward. He came off really well about both Tomase's fiction re the walkthrough and the aftermath of the Scottish Game. Plus, Randy Moss needs a show or a podcast or something. I'd pay good money to have him and Pioli do their respective BB and EA impersonations. Tedy Bruschi is nails--and Michael Strahan belongs on the wasteland that is weekend morning TV. JFC, what a prententious fool.
 

JMDurron

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I seem to be the only one here besides you enjoying this series. I am a bit taken aback that after all the winning and the fact that its all history, some cannot look fondly back at the ride, including the painful times. I wanted more too but damn I will take what we got.

As for the narrative choices, they make sense to me. The showrunners were never going to get everything perfect for hardcore fans but I feel like they are doing a decent job thus far.

Finally, I have seen the comments here repeatedly so people are looking for it but this doesn't feel like Kraft hagiography to me. Maybe it will turn out that way but pretty much every subject is given shine here. This is a documentary about the winning and not an airing of the grievances. We may get that too but not here.
You aren’t alone in enjoying it. It’s certainly preferable to reading the 95th re-hash of the Spygate drama upthread!

Even knowing the dark place that the episode was going to, it was nice to be reminded of just how lopsided some of those early-season games were. Agree with those who noted that the team was clearly vulnerable by the time the Ravens/Giants games came around.
 

Van Everyman

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Well in fairness, the third episode included three SB wins, so …

I understand people being protective of this legacy – it is unprecedented and ours. But the story has lots of highs and lows, a curmudgeon of an architect and ten years of heartache and drama in the middle. It’s not all going to be unicorns and show ponies.

FWIW, I re-watched both of the latest episodes with my 16 year-old Boston sports fanatic daughter who had never really seen Spygate explained at length. And while she did make me pause and answer a few additional questions about the whole taping scheme (the appearance of Goodell immediately made her conclude the league did a hatchet job), I didn’t have to provide *that* much more context. The series did ok – and pivoted quickly enough to the “Fuck ‘em all” revenge tour that team went on which the episode rightly reveled in.

Best moments in these episodes:

1) Ty Law: “Whachu’ talkin’ ‘bout, Kurt?”
2) The pan across to Randy’s first scene
3) Jonathan Kraft’s discussion of the locker room after the Scottish Game
4) Randy’s Forrest Gump story
5) Bruschi talking about how much he “kinda liked” being the bad guys
6) The tape of Bill in the locker room telling guys to “Shut the fuck up” after Spygate followed by “Well, that shut them the fuck up” after the Cremation of Joesph J. Gibbs.

I look at it this way: the pain of that game and 2007 is significantly lessened post 2014-18. And while the doc makes the point that after Spygate, this team rallied around Bill, the truth is, they never stopped doing that, even through this season. So yeah, fuck ‘em all and bring it on.
 

bougrj1

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I think the franchise is in excellent hands with Jonathan Kraft going forward. He came off really well about both Tomase's fiction re the walkthrough and the aftermath of the Scottish Game.
Interesting. All I can hear is "I'm the eldest boy!" every time he speaks.
 

JokersWildJIMED

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Apparently Deion Branch figures heavily in the Aaron Hernandez episode. He lived across the street from him.
Leaving Branch out of these episodes is perplexing, especially if they are trying to build some sort of narrative around how the dynasty was built and what ultimately “happened “. Branch was key to two SuperBowls and BB’s decision to not resign him was obviously discussed and controversial, including with Brady. Having a quote from McDaniels after the 2006 AFCCG that they realized they needed weapons brushes over the issue. Big time.
 

steveluck7

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Scott Zolak had a good point the other day.
the documentary is called “Dyansty” but they don’t cover the actual games (or even time frame) that made them a dynasty.
 

Silverdude2167

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Scott Zolak had a good point the other day.
the documentary is called “Dyansty” but they don’t cover the actual games (or even time frame) that made them a dynasty.
To do that they would need to talk about how it was a really well-coached team that won on the margins with leadership from the HC.
 

DJnVa

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Scott Zolak had a good point the other day.
the documentary is called “Dyansty” but they don’t cover the actual games (or even time frame) that made them a dynasty.
I think that's the point. It's about the people not the game.
 

Hoya81

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Leaving Branch out of these episodes is perplexing, especially if they are trying to build some sort of narrative around how the dynasty was built and what ultimately “happened “. Branch was key to two SuperBowls and BB’s decision to not resign him was obviously discussed and controversial, including with Brady. Having a quote from McDaniels after the 2006 AFCCG that they realized they needed weapons brushes over the issue. Big time.
Does a healthy Branch make the difference against the Colts and eventually the Bears? Maybe. That Bears team came into Foxboro in November and gave them a real scare. They ran all over the Pats D while picking Brady twice and causing 4 fumbles. If Grossman didn't throw one of his trademark awful picks late (as part of a 15-34, 176yds, 3INT performance), they could have lost.
 

Carmine Hose

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Since this is a Kraft production, maybe they are thinking they covered the SB runs plentifully in the Three Games to Glory series of releases after each win. This seems to be trying to get out other parts of the story that weren't as well and previously documented, as well as putting the Kraft narrative spin on everything.
 

fairlee76

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I think that's the point. It's about the people not the game.
Definitely about the people and not the games. I am mostly enjoying it so far for the nostalgia alone but glossing over the 2003 and 2004 Super Bowl teams, and the fallout from releasing Lawyer in 2002, seems a bizarre decision. As does completely (IIRC) failing to mention the signing and subsequent success Corey Dillon had with the Pats. To me, that showed that the organization was willing to take a flyer on a talented guy who other orgs might pass over due to reputation concerns.

The show is pretty heavy on the Kraft hagiography but it has nothing on the book. The first 100 pages or so are pretty well dedicated to Kraft.
 

DJnVa

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Yeah--but it's a 20 year dynasty told in 10 hours. It's either 30 minutes a season, or some things are gonna be skipped.
 
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Definitely about the people and not the games. I am mostly enjoying it so far for the nostalgia alone but glossing over the 2003 and 2004 Super Bowl teams, and the fallout from releasing Lawyer in 2002, seems a bizarre decision. As does completely (IIRC) failing to mention the signing and subsequent success Corey Dillon had with the Pats. To me, that showed that the organization was willing to take a flyer on a talented guy who other orgs might pass over due to reputation concerns.

The show is pretty heavy on the Kraft hagiography but it has nothing on the book. The first 100 pages or so are pretty well dedicated to Kraft.
They traded a 2nd round pick for Dillon, it wasn’t really a “flyer” on a guy other teams might pass on
 

Justthetippett

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Yeah--but it's a 20 year dynasty told in 10 hours. It's either 30 minutes a season, or some things are gonna be skipped.
It's still missing a coherent theme. The closest they've gotten is some kind of "winning/football obsession to a fault" idea summed up well by Pioli's drug analogy. In the hands of a more talented documentarian, that could be a really interesting angle. Even as fans, by the end it was almost harder to lose than anything else; every blemish felt somehow like a missed brushstroke in the Sistine Chapel.

I also think the filming of the interviews is a little uninspired. Get some of these guys out of the studio, get them on location different places, etc. Particularly for episode 3, why not sit in the spot where the videotaping happened, reenact it a bit more? Instead we got Robyn Glaser with a hammer.
 

Fishercat

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Yeah--but it's a 20 year dynasty told in 10 hours. It's either 30 minutes a season, or some things are gonna be skipped.
I mean... There are six seasons that by definition made NE a dynasty and three other super bowl appearances. Yadda yaddaing two of those six seasons to spend a full episode on a season that was one of the three is distinctly not telling the story of the dynasty
 

k-factory

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This is designed for the haters as much as the fans. The Strahan interview and glorification seems out of tune for a story about the Pats so clearly this is aimed beyond Pats fans. I get it but what a tough watch.
Also this whole thing makes me respect Kraft less. Why call out your coach as a “schmuck?”
The guy kept delivering for you, show some grace.
 

JokersWildJIMED

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To be fair, Kraft has repeated that “schmuck” story for years and years, so it’s nothing new.
 

lexrageorge

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This is designed for the haters as much as the fans. The Strahan interview and glorification seems out of tune for a story about the Pats so clearly this is aimed beyond Pats fans. I get it but what a tough watch.
Also this whole thing makes me respect Kraft less. Why call out your coach as a “schmuck?”
The guy kept delivering for you, show some grace.
To be fair, Kraft has repeated that “schmuck” story for years and years, so it’s nothing new.
Also, to be fair, Belichick essentially ignored a letter from the commissioner's office telling him to not do what he was doing. And then later told Kraft there was almost no benefit. As a result, Kraft had 250,000 reasons to call him a schmuck.
 

fairlee76

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They traded a 2nd round pick for Dillon, it wasn’t really a “flyer” on a guy other teams might pass on
Yeah, I should have used "chance" instead of "flyer" there. Just seemed odd to essentially skip over 2002 - 2004 given how much happened there.
 

Dave Stapleton

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I am forever greatful as a fan for Kraft buying the team, keeping it here, making the investments to build a winner and having the patience to hire Belichick and let him do his thing which led to Brady being the QB and all that came after. I know this isn't unique to Kraft as billionaires go but I have always had a hard time with his Uber-PR consciousness and "look at how wonderful I am" persona. It isn't boorish or over the top. In fact, I think it is a bit passive aggressive. See today's Boston.com article about his thoughtful gift to Taylor Swift. This was all fed to the press by Kraft with quotes and all. It is a little thing which I think tells a lot about his personality and is consistent with some of what we are seeing in this series and how he is approaching the post-BB narrative. I think I am somewhat influcenced by other stories of which I am aware around the family (nothing bad or unseemly but consistent with this persona).

Robert Kraft gave Taylor Swift a heartfelt gift from Gillette Stadium (boston.com)

While talking to fans, Kraft explained his role in making her appearance at Patriot Place happen in the first place.
 

Prodigal Sox

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I am forever greatful as a fan for Kraft buying the team, keeping it here, making the investments to build a winner and having the patience to hire Belichick and let him do his thing which led to Brady being the QB and all that came after.
Agree completely with the above. However, he seems to have an incessant need for credit while deflecting any blame for things that go wrong. He's not going to take any of the credit pie from Brady so that leaves Belichick. Also deflects any blame to Belichick.
 

Justthetippett

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Agree completely with the above. However, he seems to have an incessant need for credit while deflecting any blame for things that go wrong. He's not going to take any of the credit pie from Brady so that leaves Belichick. Also deflects any blame to Belichick.
Shouldn't he also take some heat for Parcells? Yes, Parcells is primarily to blame there, but there were probably plenty of chances to mend the fences before things went totally sideways at the worst possible moment. Even RKK has said he learned from the experience.
 

NortheasternPJ

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Leaving Branch out of these episodes is perplexing, especially if they are trying to build some sort of narrative around how the dynasty was built and what ultimately “happened “. Branch was key to two SuperBowls and BB’s decision to not resign him was obviously discussed and controversial, including with Brady. Having a quote from McDaniels after the 2006 AFCCG that they realized they needed weapons brushes over the issue. Big time.
Its extremely odd where the pretended some guys didn’t exist like Branch and Welker and then they’re in interviews in later episodes. How hard would it have been to say in the 2006 offseason they added Moss and Welker? Or a passing mention of Branch
 

riboflav

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Also, to be fair, Belichick essentially ignored a letter from the commissioner's office telling him to not do what he was doing. And then later told Kraft there was almost no benefit. As a result, Kraft had 250,000 reasons to call him a schmuck.
According to Kraft, that is.
 

dynomite

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Definitely about the people and not the games. I am mostly enjoying it so far for the nostalgia alone but glossing over the 2003 and 2004 Super Bowl teams, and the fallout from releasing Lawyer in 2002, seems a bizarre decision. As does completely (IIRC) failing to mention the signing and subsequent success Corey Dillon had with the Pats. To me, that showed that the organization was willing to take a flyer on a talented guy who other orgs might pass over due to reputation concerns.

The show is pretty heavy on the Kraft hagiography but it has nothing on the book. The first 100 pages or so are pretty well dedicated to Kraft.
I haven't gotten there yet on these shows, but all this talk of skipping 2003 & 2004 makes me want to urge all of us to go back and re-watch the 2003 (narrated by McGinest, Harrison, and Charlie Weis) and 2004 (narrated by Belichick, Bruschi, and Troy Brown) America's Games, which feature wonderful footage and near contemporaneous memories from the season.

The 2003 one contains Harrison's incredible story (one of many) about meeting Belichick at the Ground Round, the fallout from the Milloy release, and narrator Larry Fishburne's incredible line "Their next loss came in October... the following year."

The 2004 one has great stuff from Belichick about training camp, and the cocky Pats starters losing in a preseason game against the Bengals, Troy Brown talking about playing DB, that wonderful footage of the Pats running a walkthrough of the Branch TD in a hotel ballroom the night before the AFC Championship game in Pittsburgh, as well as some of Belichick's SB pregame speech against the Eagles.

They're on YouTube. I'll spoiler the links in case it's not kosher to share these videos here (I'm pretty sure they're on a server somewhere as well?)

 
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lexrageorge

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Shouldn't he also take some heat for Parcells? Yes, Parcells is primarily to blame there, but there were probably plenty of chances to mend the fences before things went totally sideways at the worst possible moment. Even RKK has said he learned from the experience.
Parcells was known for being difficult and leaving things a mess dating back to his days with the Giants. Yeah, Kraft made some mistakes but none worthy of Parcells deliberately undermining the team during the Super Bowl.
 

ShaneTrot

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Seeing the Tuna made me nostalgic for his time with the Pats. He is an asshole and the way he left was despicable but I loved listening to his press conferences. He used to do a one on one interview weekly on I think EEI, and it was a must listen. He made fun of the press and they loved him for it because he was good copy.
 

riboflav

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This isn't directed at you, Ed.

I'll admit I'm sorta breathless in defending BB. I mean he's the GOAT coach so it seems absurd to pick him apart. That said, I recognize he's not perfect as no one is. I watch a clip like that and I find it pretty funny. But, I'm also born and raised in New England where my mom said so much worse to me when I was half Cassel's age. But, this is clearly being presented in a way to tarnish BB's coaching style? Like through 2024 eyes? IDK what this is all getting at. Why would I watch this? Or, am I missing something? Was Cassel actually complimenting him and the producers decided to clip this to make BB look like a know-nothing jerk? I don't understand the context here.

IDK how I'm supposed to be receiving all this revision on BB's tenure here. He's not Knight. These were paid pros who got tongue lashings. Much of it was steeped in northeastern sarcasm. OK?