NEPD Staff Writer: Mike Loyko
The highly anticipated Bill Belichick documentary finally aired tonight, here are some thoughts that I took away after watching the brilliant NFL films documentary.
It has been call “football porn” for Patriot fans, but I would argue that watching this was better than sex. It left me wanting more, and there will be next week.
The main conclusion I took away from the film is just how frustrating the entire 2009 season was for Bill Belichick. It became clear throughout the film that coach had serious questions about his team’s make-up and the roster that was in place that season.
Even though it’s not shown, it was reported that the locker room became unhealthy. Players like Shawn Springs, Adalius Thomas and Laurence Maroney just didn’t buy in to the program. Although those players aren’t mentioned by name, I can’t help but think Bill is talking about some of them when he says “I just can’t get these guys to play the way I want them to.
One of the revelations that came out of the documentary for me was that Bill Belichick essentially answered the much debated question of why Randy Moss was traded early into the 2010 season. The Patriots became too reliant on Moss as a deep threat, and in turn became too one dimensional. They weren’t able to run the ball, so by taking away Moss deep and limiting Wes Welker the Patriots were easy to scheme against and very predictable.
The Jets used that blueprint week 2 and then the Broncos copied it during the ’09 season. Both games were frustrating loses where the offense failed to get going. It was clear early on in the 2009 season that the Patriots would need to diversify their offensive attack.
This team just seemed to lack a mental toughness and the desire to win that it takes to make a Super Bowl run. All season long it was like one step forward two steps back. Right from the get go they struggled. They were able to steal a win in the opening game against Buffalo, and they lost week 2. They beat the Ravens and then lose to the Broncos. Consistency was sorely lacking in all aspects. On top of that the team made way too many mental mistakes and failed in key situations all year.
Whether it was the Bronco’s game, the 4th and 2 in Indianapolis, the road game in New Orleans or the Ravens playoff game, the team just failed to perform when they needed to most. Transitioning from the Super Bowl Patriot teams to this version it’s clear to see why Coach Belichick was so frustrated so often.
It’s amazing to me how coach Belichick can see exactly how a game is going to play out while he is prepping for it. Prior to the Jets game coach is going through his keys to the game, and what the Patriots must do to win the game. The game ended up playing out exactly how he predicted, with the Patriots and the coaching staff failing to implement the keys which he went over prior. During the game his frustration with DC Dean Pees can be heard. After watching “Part 1” I don’t think it’s hard to see why DC Dean Pees was let go after the season and why the coaching staff was restructured.
The thing that is clearest to me after watching the film is that the 2011 Patriots are a much better and well rounded team than the 2009 Patriots. Looking at the roster and watching some of the behind the scenes, it’s amazing how many question marks this team had. The secondary was basically pieced together, the WR’s after Randy Moss and Wes Welker were nonexistent. The running back position featured 43 older players, none of whom are lead backs and the disaster that was Laurence Maroney. The defensive line had just traded Richard Seymour prior to week 1. It’s amazing to me that Belichick got a division title out of this team.
The 2009 season maybe more than any other really speaks to how good of a coach Bill truly is. Even though the season was considered a rollercoaster they still won 11 games and had a home playoff game, which is a season many franchises would love.
Part 1 of a football life was exceptional. I can’t wait for next week’s episode, especially what Bill’s reaction after the Colts game, after the Welker injury and after the playoff loss to the Ravens. One thing is certain we are sure lucky to have this man as the head of our organization.
Tags: Bill Belichick