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Sport Belichick appreciates NFL history, and makes it, too

05:20  29 november  2019
05:20  29 november  2019 Source:   houstonchronicle.com

Tom Brady: Bill Belichick uses incidents like Thursday as teaching moments

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“ It was about recording history . It ’s something Coach Belichick appreciates fully. He not only loves and appreciates football history . Belichick has coached since the early 1970s, which makes him something close to living NFL history . In 2010, Belichick had a chance to tie Brown on the all-time

Earlier this season, Bill Belichick became the third-winningest coach in NFL history , trailing only Well, actually, we don't have to look too hard to find the man who has been Belichick 's Kryptonite. The two former Giants explain what makes Coughlin successful against Belichick in the lead-up to

For a history buff like Bill Belichick, 2019 has been another memorable year.

a person wearing a helmet: Under the hoodie, Bill Belichick is a student of NFL history.© Winslow Townson, FRE / Associated Press

Under the hoodie, Bill Belichick is a student of NFL history.

After leading New England to a record-sixth Super Bowl victory — tying him with George Halas and Curly Lambeau for the most championships in NFL history — Belichick participated in three historical projects that should interest football fans at every level.

When the Patriots play the Texans at NRG Stadium on Sunday night, fans should appreciate Belichick’s sustained greatness and his incredible achievements in 45 years of coaching in the NFL, the last 20 with New England, where he’s won at least 10 games in 17 consecutive seasons and compiled a 265-90 record, counting playoffs.

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- Bill Belichick said Tuesday that being part of the blue-ribbon panel to select the NFL 100 All-Time Team has not only made him a better coach but "The whole process was great and, I think , in a way, definitely made me a better coach from the things that I've learned. It was a very great honor to be a

Specifically, Belichick made Tuesday a wide-ranging history lesson on the roots of football , essentially creating an environment in which players were going back in time. That, of course, meant that there were leather helmets on the practice field, digital clocks covered up in the team meeting

Watching Belichick and the Patriots is witnessing history. Belichick makes history, and this year, he’s participating in projects that have historical significance for the NFL’s first 100 years.

Belichick is part of the 25-person Blue Ribbon Panel that will elect the Centennial Class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2020. He was on the 26-person committee that selected the NFL 100 All-Time Team and is hosting the NFL Network series on it with Rich Eisen and Cris Collinsworth.

On Dec. 12, HBO premieres, “Belichick and Saban: The Art of Coaching.” HBO Films is promoting the documentary on Belichick and Nick Saban as the greatest coaches in NFL and college football history. The network won’t get a lot of arguments against them.

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It hasn’t been making his no-name defense turn mediocre offenses into terrible ones. It hasn’t even been his ability to turn both his shorts and sweatshirts into something Second, and this is what had Belichick licking his lips, given the speed of the kick, return team and cover team, the initial collisions

I think about what Belichick would do with different teams a lot, but what I often overlook, along with the broader football Belichick has the exact opposite effect in football : His existence gets everyone else fired. Not to be too existential, but nothing actually matters when it comes to the Patriots.

Last week, Belichick called Paul Brown the greatest coach in NFL history. Yes, Brown is one of the greatest coaches in history because of the impact he made on the game at the high school, college and professional levels — seven titles in Cleveland, including three in the NFL, and founding the Bengals — but Belichick is the very best.

Dealing with free agency and the salary cap, Belichick has been forced to make difficult decisions his predecessors never had to make, but he’s guided the Patriots to nine Super Bowls and could be on track for another one. They bring an AFC-best 10-1 record to Houston. He has eight Super Bowl rings, including two as the Giants’ defensive coordinator.

Perhaps his most impressive statistic is one losing record with the Patriots. His first team in 2000 finished 5-11. That meant in his first six years as a head coach — the first five in Cleveland — his teams made the playoffs one time.

Football, Thanksgiving bring out the best in Belichick

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“ It was about recording history . It ’s something Coach Belichick appreciates fully. He not only loves and appreciates football history . Belichick has coached since the early 1970s, which makes him something close to living NFL history .

“I think it ’s a really good question, but it would entail probably a pretty lengthy answer,” Belichick warned from the start. Belichick ’s affection for special teams runs deep. He also loves talking about the role of punt protectors in the NFL . It came up because the Patriots placed key special teamer

In 2001, Belichick installed Tom Brady as his starter over Drew Bledsoe, and they’ve been the most successful coach/quarterback combination in history.

While the Patriots were preparing for the Texans last week, Belichick was asked if spending so much time analyzing the history of the NFL had caused him to think about his legacy?

It was the kind of question he would never answer truthfully, of course, because he rarely talks about himself, but it seemed appropriate under the circumstances.

“Honestly, I haven't thought too much about that,” he said. “At some point, I’ll be able to reflect on it, but right now, honestly, just trying to do a good job here to get our team ready to go against a tough Texans team that has a lot of talent and is playing very well.”

That’s so Belichick.

But he was more revealing when talking pro football history and selecting the greatest of the great coaches, players and games before voting on the 15-member Centennial Class of the Hall of Fame that will include 10 seniors, three contributors and two coaches. Belichick’s passion for history is well-known.

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15, NFL .com's Albert Breer passed along a quote from the Denver Broncos superstar quarterback giving New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick Some may be quick to point out leaders such as Vince Lombardi, Don Shula, Bill Walsh, Chuck Noll and others, but it would be extremely difficult to

Bill Belichick knows his NFL history . We were reminded of this Friday, when the Patriots’ head coach spent a portion of his Friday press conference talking about special teams. The really interesting stuff came when Belichick was asked why he liked having punters hold on field goal attempts.

“It's really been a great honor to be included in that and really a thrill to look back at 100 years in the National Football League and talk about the great players,” he said. “Some coaches and contributors are also involved in the potential selection process. I learned a lot about a lot of individuals and the history of the league. I learned a lot about the way football has evolved in a century, and that was very enlightening.”

Belichick called Brown the greatest coach on the NFL Network series on the all-time team.

“The things I respect and admire and I think are historic about coach Brown are what he did for the game and how far ahead of his time he really was,” Belichick said. “When coach Brown left Ohio State and went to Great Lakes (during World War II) and had the opportunity to interact with all the football people that were in the service, he became familiar with that talent and was able to, as a scout and an evaluator, put together the great Cleveland teams in the All-America Football Conference, and then those teams won in the National Football League.

“He integrated the National Football League, integrated the All-America Football Conference. Those are very important steps that were resisted by some of the owners in the NFL, but he wouldn't back down on that.”

Belichick tops Forbes' list of highest-paid coaches in U.S. sports

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That’s what makes Bill Belichick so interesting. – Bill Belichick . 20. “Whatever success I’ve had it is because I’ve tried to understand the situation of the player. – Bill Belichick . 16. “If you like football , and you like to come in and work on football , then the New England Patriots is a great place to be.

“I think it ’s a really good question, but it would entail probably a pretty lengthy answer,” Belichick began. “There are so many different levels that that question encompasses. Let’s start with rookies coming into the league. The first thing we do is teach them the rules in the National Football League

Brown was recognized as a great innovator who created concepts that allowed the Browns to become an NFL powerhouse and helped grow the league’s popularity.

“All the things we do today, he did 60 to 70 years ago,” Belichick said. “Scouting, evaluating players, training, conditioning, the taxi squad concepts that he put together with (Arthur) McBride, the owner in Cleveland, playbooks, scouting reports, film study (and) preparation.”

Like Brown, Belichick is revered by coaches around the league, especially those who’ve worked for him. Bill O’Brien, who spent five years (2007-11) with the Patriots, was asked why they continue to win despite losing so many coaches and players?

“Because of the head coach,” he said.

One reason for the Patriots’ consistency is because Belichick has been able to evolve with the times.

“He’s able to keep up with all the trends,” O’Brien said. “He’s got a great work ethic. I think he'd be the first to tell you he's had a lot of great people around him. He does a good job of being the same guy every day and does a great job of coaching the team.”

Belichick turned 67 this year, and he hasn’t given any indication he’s ready to ride into the sunset. Every season — every week — offers him a new challenge. Those challenges help keep him interested because they bring out the best in the best coach in history.

“They play to the strengths of their team,” O’Brien said. “I read an amazing stat: Since 2001, they’re plus-208 in the turnover battle. They have 200 more takeaways since 2001 than their opponent. Since 2001, when they win the turnover battle, they're 154-13.

“Whatever type of team they have, fundamentally, they do things right all the time. I think we all strive to do things in the best interest of the team all the time. They have, without a doubt, set the trend on that.”

And it starts at the top, where Belichick sits at the head of the table of the greatest coaches in pro football history.

john.mcclain@chron.com

twitter.com/mcclain_on_nfl

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a group of people playing football on a field: Chicago Bears tight end Jesper Horsted (49) makes a touchdown catch against Detroit Lions defensive back Will Harris (25) during the third quarter at Ford Field on Novmeber 28, 2019. 

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