FOXBOROUGH — Bill Belichick came up big Wednesday. Facing the media for the first time since his tight end, Aaron Hernandez, was charged with murder June 26, the legendary Patriots football coach was fair, measured, empathic, remorseful, dignified, ever-secretive, and best of all, human.News flash - Bill Belichick is NOT a cyborg! I knew it!
Throughout the column, Shank lays it on thick in spots, and takes some shots along the way (emphasis mine):
This was necessary. The Hernandez case is nothing like Spygate, Tebowing, Fourth and 2, or hating on Eric Mangini. A young man is dead, an ex-Patriot is in jail, and the hard-earned brand of the local football team is forever tarnished.You get the sense from reading the column that Shank wants to rip Belichick a new one but never has an opening to do so, or just doesn't take it. With football season just around the cornere, there's still five more months to be an asshole. Patience, young Jedi...
There were still some toady Patriots fans who felt that their beloved coach (“In Bill We Trust”) could stay in the bunker forever, but Belichick put that nonsense to rest in his opening statement when he said, “I’m primarily responsible for the people we bring into the football operation . . . most of those decisions have worked out but some don’t. Overall, I’m proud of the hundreds of players that have come through this program but I’m personally disappointed and hurt in a situation like this.’’
Perfect. The coach knew that this was not the day to play the “stupid game,’’ that’s worked so well in Foxborough over the last 13 seasons. Belichick has demonstrated uncommon disdain for disclosure and public relations during his tenure with the Patriots. Ask him about tight end Rob Gronkowski’s status two days after a surgery and the coach might say, “I haven’t talked to the doctor yet.” Ask him if today is Thursday and he’ll deadpan, “Traditionally, Thursday is the day that follows Wednesday.’’