There was a nice little exchange when Bill Belichick was interviewed on “Dale and Holley” Wednesday and was reminded that Jan. 27 was the date he was hired by the Patriots back in 2000. It’s been kind of a rough week for the Hoodie,...so Shank does his little part to help end the week on a miserable note, like with these highlights:
The coveted Belichick had gone 36-44 in five seasons as head coach of the Cleveland Browns. His only playoff win was against Parcells’s Patriots on Jan. 1, 1995....and with helpful reminders of Shank fully supporting the new coach of the Patriots and grant him the time he needs to build a contending team.
Belichick’s first year in New England was hardly a turnaround season. It was quite the opposite. The Patriots started 0-4 and finished 5-11. This means that Belichick’s career record was 41-55 in his first six seasons as an NFL head coach.
Ahhh, who am I kidding?
Here’s how one Boston columnist (OK, it was me) reviewed the Cleveland debacle: “It’s been 10 painful weeks and there is nothing left to say other than the once-unthinkable refrain: ‘Bring back Pete Carroll.’ . . . The wreck of the SS Robert Kraft washed up on the shores of Lake Erie yesterday and it was an ugly sight. This must be the bottom. Your Super Bowl team of 1996 officially plunged to the nadir, losing to a second-year team that had dropped seven straight games and hadn’t scored a touchdown since Oct. 15 . . . We are back to the days of Clive Rush and Rod Rust. The Patriots have lost 14 of their last 18 football games. Bill Belichick was in charge of bringing respectability back to New England football, but right now fans would settle for a little dignity, which was in short supply on Bloody Sunday in Ohio.’’Nice of Shank to make himself part of the story, isn't it?
Three weeks later, after the Patriots beat a bad Chiefs team on “Monday Night Football,” I wrote, “It was depressing to see how far the Patriots have fallen and to know that all of America was in on the joke. Those Monday Night Tuna Bowls with the Jets seem so far away . . . Patriot fans have proven to be a patient lot this year. The anger and outrage fostered by the Pete Carroll era have given way to benign acceptance of a losing team under Belichick . . . Last night the whole country saw how things have deteriorated, and it may be a long time before the people from ‘Monday Night Football’ return.’’
And who's fool enough to think this last sentence is sincere?
Bill Belichick recovered from his Cleveland experience and recovered from his first season in New England, and something tells me he will recover nicely from a hurtful and controversial loss in the AFC Championship game at Denver last Sunday.