First it's that Rob Gronkoswki was playing near the end of a blowout victory. "Gronk didn’t need to be on the field and the grid god got even, breaking the bone of New England’s Sub Zero superstar," sayeth His Shankness.
Oh, but it seems anyone who actually knows something about, you know, football defended the decison:
- "Jeff Saturday was my right guard on the PAT team, and I'd never think of taking him off," says ex Super Bowl winning coach Tony Dungy. "All my years in football, I never heard anyone, never heard Chuck Noll saying, 'Well, we better get Jack Ham off the PAT team.' It's not something I'd question."
- "You always leave your starters in on the PAT, even on the field-goal block team," says ex Super Bowl winning linebacker Tedy Bruschi.
So Shank moves on to the next bitch: "We can’t go there yet because the Patriots haven’t even acknowledged the injury."
Except that they have: "Asked for an update Monday on Gronkowski, coach Bill Belichick said, 'I don't really have anything. I know that our medical people are looking at all the players today when they come in, trying to assess their situation, like we always do on Monday. I'll catch up with them as they've had a chance (to gather that information).' "
So we go to the third and final whine, which is really the point of the entire column: "Belichick stonewalls just because he can." Yes, yes he does. And so far, that seems to be working. Five Super Bowl appearances, three victories...seriously, you really need the coach to be Smilin Jack Connors?
Next complaint, please!