Only winning suits this Bill
By Tom Curran
NBCSports.com Updated: Oct30, 2007, 11:34 AM EDT
(First of a three-part series)
“Right now, I’m the only one that’s not telling them how great everything is. I’m the only one. What do you think these guys hear when they leave here? From their families, their friends, their girlfriends, their buddies? Everybody’s telling them how great they are. I try to balance it.” -- Bill Belichick
FOXBORO, Mass. -- He sits on a small riser in the media room at Gillette Stadium on a Friday afternoon two days before his Patriots are to play the Washington Redskins. Cutoff gray sweatpants. Cutoff gray sweatshirt. Forearms resting on bended, 55-year-old knees.
Two days later, his Patriots bludgeoned the Redskins, 52-7. The win came with the attendant outrage and eyerolling that seems to accompany every New England win. The Patriots poured it on at the end, was the criticism. Embarrassed Washington and their Hall of Fame head coach Joe Gibbs. Gibbs said he took no issue with Belichick or the Patriots. But some of his players did. And huge swaths of fans and media did as well.
Through the first eight games of the 2007 season, the Patriots have been historic. They’re 8-0 and averaging more than 41 points per game, winning by an average of 25.5 points. No team in the Super Bowl era has shown such staggering dominance in the first half of a season.