Tag:Bill Belichick
Posted on: September 8, 2011 12:59 pm
 

Albert Haynesworth on himself: A 'sleeping giant'

Posted by Will Brinson

The most frustrating thing about Albert Haynesworth is that he blatantly works harder before he gets paid. This is true for many athletes, but more so for Haynesworth who never really gave much of an effort for the Redskins, despite them paying him more than $100 million.

That of course led to Haynesworth being shipped to the Patriots in the offseason for chicken scratch. That of course led to him being the happiest guy in the NFL. And that of course will lead to the inevitable moment when he spends all of Week 14 sacking Rex Grossman and John Beck into oblivion.

And the impressive, motivated play will probably start before then. Thinking a big season isn't coming from Haynesworth is just silly. In fact, just ask the big fella himself.

"Oh yeah," Haynesworth said when asked if he was ready to get back on the field, via the Boston Globe. "At least last year, I didn't think I was going to play because I was playing a lot of scout team. Now I'm in the system and I'm playing and practicing and stuff and I think it's time for me -- I guess, the sleeping giant -- to awake and go back out there on the field and play football again."

As someone who's never really been able to push my value into nine figures, this is incredibly frustrating. It's cool that Haynesworth found a new form of motivation in terms of revenge or whatever he's trying to get against Washington by not being terrible at his job.

But it's also immensely annoying to see him getting ready for a big year so quickly after loafing through his monster contract. But then again, everyone knew how his last deal with the Redskins was going to play out, and nothing really went different from expectations. So he's not totally to blame.

It's just kind of obnoxious to rub it in everyone's face is all.

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Posted on: September 6, 2011 10:52 am
Edited on: September 6, 2011 11:41 am
 

Brady on Moss: 'Id welcome him with open arms'

Tom Brady on Randy Moss: "I’d welcome him with open arms.” (Getty Images)

Posted by Ryan Wilson

On Sunday, our esteemed colleague Will Brinson wrote that Randy Moss, should he choose to come out of retirement, would be willing to return to the Patriots. This is like saying that, if you'd be willing to give us a Gulfstream G550 we'd gladly give up those coach seats that invariably have us stuck between the heavy-set fellow and that tin box passing for a bathroom.

Chip Fontanazza of the West Virginia MetroNews wrote recently that "Moss does regret leaving the New England Patriots and that would most likely be the only team he would play for in the NFL if he would return."

We'd expect head coach Bill Belichick to either ignore the speculation altogether or, in his best Stephen Hawking robot voice, say something like "Randy Moss was an important part of our success when he was here. We appreciate his contributions but we have moved on."

And while those may be the team talking points this week, quarterback Tom Brady apparently didn't receive his copy before going on Boston's WEEI Tuesday morning.

“You never know in the NFL,” Brady said, according to the Boston Herald. “I love Randy, he’s one of the greatest receivers in the history of the game, one of the greatest players I’ve had a chance to play with. But unfortunately, I don’t make personnel decisions. If I did, I’d still have all my friends here -- Troy (Brown), David Patten, Deion (Branch) would have never left. I’ve seen so many guys move on, some come back. … But I don’t know (if he’ll play again). Who knows? I can’t get into his brain. I love the guy, he’s a great friend of mine, and if he ever did come back and play, I’d welcome him with open arms.”

From Brady's perspective there's a lot to like. Brady's "go-to" receiver in 2006 was Reche Caldwell, who had 61 catches for 760 yards and four touchdowns. A year later, Moss' first in New England, he hauled in 98 passes for 1,493 yards and an NFL record 23 touchdowns.

During his four seasons with the Pats, Moss had 259 receptions for 3,904 yards and 50 touchdowns.

Yeah, it's hard to blame Randy or Tom for pining for the good ol' days.

Of course, Moss looked nothing like his Hall of Fame self after the Pats unloaded him on the Vikings four games into last season (4 games, 13 receptions, 2 TDs). And he looked worse than that after Minnesota cut him and he finished the season with the Titans (8 games, 6 receptions, 0 TDs). But that may have had as much to do with lack of motivation as diminishing skills.

Still, we wouldn't shut the door completely on a Moss-New England reunion. Belichick isn't a by-the-book personnel guy -- he's been known to mix things up. Like, say, when he acquired Moss from the Raiders for a fourth-round pick.

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Posted on: September 5, 2011 10:06 am
 

Report: Randy Moss willing to return to Patriots

Posted by Will Brinson

Randy Moss is, presumably, hanging out somewhere playing shuffleboard watching racecars make left turns. Because that's what retired people do, obviously. However, for all that excitement, Moss would reportedly be willing and/or interested in returning to the NFL ... if it were with the Patriots.

That's according to Chip Fontanazza of the West Virginia MetroNews, who not only interviewed Moss about stuff that doesn't relate to football but managed to pick up anonymous source that said "Moss does regret leaving the New England Patriots and that would most likely be the only team he would play for in the NFL if he would return."

The timing of the information is not just coincidental, but it's logical as well -- ever since Moss announced his retirement from the NFL, he's made it clear how much he respects and adores the New England organization.

It seems pretty unlikely that the Pats will make another run at/with Moss, though. They've certainly known that Moss would return to New England to wrap up his career, and therefore already could have signed him.

Instead, they went out and traded for Chad Ochocinco in order to beef up an already stout -- Wes Welker, Deion Branch, Brandon Tate, Julian Edleman, Aaron Hernandez, Rob Gronkowski -- group of pass-catchers.

But Ocho's struggled and the Pats recently dumped 2009 third-rounder Tate, so it would be a little foolish to rule anything out, especially as it relates to either Moss or Bill Belichick.

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Posted on: September 2, 2011 3:43 pm
 

Haynesworth is extremely happy to be with Pats

Posted by Ryan Wilson

It's hard to believe, especially if you don't have any, but apparently money doesn't guarantee happiness. The latest evidence comes courtesy of Albert Haynesworth, the man the Redskins saw fit to sign to a seven-year, $100 million contract (including $41 million in guarantees) prior the 2009 season, only to bench him for most of 2010 before trading him to the Patriots this offseason for a 2013 fifth-round pick.

On Thursday, Haynesworth took the field as a Patriot for the first time all preseason and showed glimpses of what makes him one of the most disruptive defensive tackles in football. After the game he was unusually ebullient, no doubt happy about his great fortune, both financially (thanks, Dan Snyder!) and personally (thanks, Bill Belichick!). 

"To me, it's a career-saving place for me to come," Haynesworth said, according to NESN.com. "I had no idea it would be like this, but it's unbelievable, and I wish I took two years ago and came here."

When asked about the differences between Washington and New England, Haynesworth didn't hesitate.

"You name it." He continued: "You don't have to watch your back or anything like that," he said about playing for the Patriots. "You know everybody is here for you, and I really enjoy that. I know my head coach is for me. I know my owner is for me. I know my players are for me. I feel relaxed. I'm having fun again. I'm having fun playing football again."

You often hear the cliche that "a change of scenery" can be good for a player's career and Haynesworth is living, breathing proof. And it would make for a heartwarming story if not for all the Redskins' fans still bitter about Haynesworth quitting on the team.

Take the Washington Post's Dan Steinberg, for example. He has trouble reconciling the new Big Al with the guy who spent two years in DC collecting a paycheck and not much else. He found this quote from Haynesworth particularly irksome.

“Well, you know what, all said and done, hell, I’d give that money back and then come here," he said Thursday night, when talking about signing with the Redskins.

Cue Steinberg:
Sure he would. The man who accepted that 2010 option bonus even when he knew he would subsequently refuse to play the position the Redskins wanted him to play while throwing away a year of his prime would just give back that money to go elsewhere.
If there's a lesson here it's this: Skins owner Dan Snyder must be stopped. Haynesworth is clearly at fault for his no-show performance in DC, but he never should've been signed in the first place. But building the roster like you're playing Madden has been a hallmark of the Snyder era, and predictably, it's been a disaster. Hopefully that changes permanently under general manager Bruce Allen. Either way, the fans have every right to be angry.

There is a silver lining of sorts. Whatever happens, Big Al ain't coming back to Washington. "If God forbid I got cut from this team, yeah, I know I can go out there and play for another team, but I feel like this is going to be my last place that I'm going," he said.

So there's that.

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Posted on: August 30, 2011 9:32 am
Edited on: August 30, 2011 9:33 am
 

'A Football Life: Bill Belichick' mikes Hoodie up

Posted by Will Brinson

If you had to pick one coach to get miked up for an entire season to produce a two-part NFL Films documentary, it would, quite obviously, be Bill Belichick, right?

Ha, exactly. Of course it wouldn't. But it is -- Belichick, in a commercial that aired during Monday night's Jets-Giants game on NFL Network, is shown like he's never been seen before, as NFL Films followed him around for the entire 2009 season, his 35th year in coaching and the Patriots 50th anniversary season.

 "Bill Belichick doesn’t only make history – he studies it; he understands his place in it; and he appreciates our desire to capture it," said NFL Films President Steve Sabol. "Like Vince Lombardi’s Packers in 1967, Belichick and the Patriots gave us access to his football life and what we created is a portrait of the coach, the father, the taskmaster – and most importantly – the man."

I highly recommend that you watch the preview, which you can see over at NFL.com, because it will show you just how freaking awesome this series will end up being. What's odd about the tease is that there's nearly more emotional moments shown in the preview than there are creepy hoodie moments.

And there's probably a good chance that everyone who sees this will have a different viewpoint of Belichick following the series than they did before. In other words, pretty par for the course for the always-excellent NFL Films.

"It is beyond measure what NFL Films has done to promote football, preserve its history and entertain generations of us who love the game," Belichick said. "When the legendary coach of the NFL Films team, Steve Sabol, approached us about capturing our 50th anniversary season in 2009, it was an honor to participate."

It's still really bizarre that, of all people, Belichick agreed to do this. But then again, there's only so much air time that the NFL can give to Rex Ryan.

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Posted on: August 27, 2011 12:07 pm
Edited on: August 27, 2011 12:07 pm
 

Comparing and contrasting Pryor and Mallett

PryorPosted by Josh Katzowitz

Rookie quarterbacks Ryan Mallett and Terrelle Pryor are not so dissimilar. Both were third round draft picks -- Mallett last April and Pryor in the supplemental draft -- and both come to the NFL with character marks that have been branded on them by a lack of discipline.

Yahoo Sports’ Jason Cole compares the two and tries to explain why they will or will not succeed with the team that drafted them.

And while we’ve already discussed how these two players will affect their teams as rookies, Cole presents some interesting theories.

Yeah, it doesn’t take a soothsayer to predict that Pryor might be in trouble now that the Raiders have their paws on him, but Cole writes that Pryor’s biggest career problem is that nobody has had the audacity to tell him no. Not in high school and not former Ohio State coach Jim Tressel.

While Raiders coach Hue Jackson will try to make his mark on Pryor, it’s also documented that Oakland owner Al Davis doesn’t exactly back up his coaches when it comes to disciplining his players. Writes Cole: “Davis picked [JaMarcus] Russell, seeing him as the second-coming of [Jim] Plunkett from an athletic perspective. Davis then let Russell run wild over coaches Lane Kiffin and Tom Cable. Those coaches tried to discipline Russell from time to time, but Davis either waived the fines or didn’t do anything until it was way too late.”

And we all know where Russell is these days (well, actually we don’t, which is kind of the point).

R. Mallett is adjusting to his new surroundings in New England (Getty).Patriots coach Bill Belichick doesn’t have a problem letting his players know the way he wants things done, which means Mallett will have to adjust. And Cole has another interesting tidbit about all the partying Mallett is alleged to have done before training camp began. Writes Cole: “Aside from the sordid tales of him from college, the latest story about him was the all-night partying he did at the NFL Players Association rookie symposium in Sarasota, Fla., in July, according to two sources.”

Which probably isn’t a good idea, especially if the biggest predraft concern by teams -- and probably the reason he slipped to the third round -- was because of his off-the-field behaviors.

You can’t be stupid and play quarterback in the NFL, and right now, the jury is still out on how much sense Mallett has in his brain.

So, aside from what round they were drafted and the concerns about their character, you have to wonder how we’ll be discussing Pryor and Mallett five years from now. Obviously, there’s now way to tell, but if we’re discussing which of the quarterbacks has a better chance to succeed on where he was drafted, you’d have to give the nod to Mallett at this point.

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Posted on: August 20, 2011 4:48 pm
 

Hot Routes 8.20.11: Patterson returns to Eagles



Posted by Josh Katzowitz

  • Eagles DT Mike Patterson -- who collapsed in a scary situation two weeks ago -- returned to the team Saturday. He saw four specialists for his arteriovenus malformation diagnosis, and he’s been cleared to play football again. Coach Andy Reid said he’d be cautious with Patterson and slowly work him back into the lineup.
  • Lions RB Jahvid Best says he’s not concerned about the possible head injury he suffered against the Browns on Friday. “It was nothing bad, but I just wasn't feeling right so they told me to sit down,” Best said.
  • CBSSports.com’s Clark Judge explains why this year will be the year for the rest of the AFC South to crack the Colts hold on the division title.
  • This can’t sit all that well with Eagles fans. The team has re-signed Reggie Wells, a backup guard last year. That might mean Philadelphia isn’t exactly a Dream Team yet, particularly on the offensive line.
  • Cowboys owner Jerry Jones isn’t sure when Cowboys owner Jerry Jones will be inducted into the Cowboys Ring of Honor. Apparently, Jones hasn’t done enough to secure the vote of Jones.

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Posted on: August 18, 2011 12:33 pm
Edited on: August 18, 2011 6:19 pm
 

Cribbs still not happy about new kickoff rule



Posted by Ryan Wilson

It's one thing for kick returners to bemoan their plight regarding the new kickoff rule that now has balls sailing into the end zone roughly a third of the time, but they're not the only people complaining. CBSSports.com's Josh Katzowitz wrote Wednesday that Patriots head coach Bill Belichick thinks the NFL wants to squash kickoffs altogether (the league disagrees with that assessment).

The Browns' Josh Cribbs, the NFL record-holder for career kickoff-return touchdowns with eight, has been understandably outspoken on the rules change. After tweeting over the weekend that kicking off from the 35-yard line has turned preseason games into a "scrimmage," he told FoxSportsOhio.com's Pat McManamon on Wednesday that "I'm entitled to my opinion."

As is often the case, player safety prompted the rules change. Saints coach Sean Payton called the kickoff return “the highest risk of injury play.”

Cribbs isn't buying it. “If that’s what the issue was, there are no stats to back it up,” he said. “The intentions are good, but the stats aren’t there.”

Football is inherently dangerous, and it's not inconceivable to think that kickoffs might be more hazardous than a typical play. But Cribbs is right -- the rules committee needs to do more than just proclaim kickoffs dangerous; they should give players the numbers to back it up. It's certainly a lot easier to sell a wholesale change that redefines one of the most exciting plays in football when you can point to a chart that shows, for example, the increased likelihood of a concussion resulting from an 11-on-11 full-speed head-on collision.

Under the new rule, the kickoff team can line up no more than five yards behind the 35-yard line in an effort to keep players from reaching full speed as they race down the field.

This makes sense and most reasonable people would agree that it should decrease injuries. But again, it would be nice if there were stats backing this up. Because following this logic, the NFL should also consider modifying punts, too. It sounds extreme, yes, but so does the thought of making guys like Cribbs and Leon Washington suddenly obsolete.

“I want somebody to come chase my record,” Cribbs said. “I want to chase it as well. I feel like rules like (this) will take it out of proportion. At the same time it’s an obstacle to get over and I’m looking forward to getting over it.”

You know who we haven't heard much from on this issue? The Steelers, a team that has struggled to cover kicks and punts in recent years. They may disagree in principle with the change, but we're pretty sure they won't put up too big a fuss given what Cribbs has done to them.


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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com