Tag:Bill Belichick
Posted on: January 27, 2009 3:48 pm
Edited on: January 27, 2009 7:29 pm

Belichick Jumps for Joy for London Game

The first 70,000 tickets to next year's NFL game at Wembley Stadium have already been sold, with 20,000 going in the first seven minutes of availability.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will "host" the New England Patriots on October 25 in London.

This new tradition was started in 2007, and in both years that a game in London has been played, the results were very positive.

  • B/R Ticket Guide
Powered by FanSnap.com <script src="http://synd.fansnap.com/synd/js/search?clientId=320532980-127719648&num=3&page=1&_category=nfl&_headliner=New%20England%20Patriots&_location=&q=&class=fansnap_syndslot"></script>

<script type="text/javascript"><!-- fansnap_syndslot_get_headliner(); fansnap_syndslot_get_category(); var fansnap_syndslot_instance = new fansnap_syndslot(); var fansnap_script_include = new Element('script'); fansnap_script_include.src = fansnap_syndslot_instance.server + '/synd/js/search?' + fansnap_syndslot_instance.params(); $('fansnap-instance').insert(fansnap_script_include); // --></script>

New England was announced as one of the teams that will be playing overseas in the 2009 season, and uber-owner Bob Craft was elated at the prospect of showcasing his team to millions of foreigners, having already alienated most of the American population of football fans outside of New England.

It was rumored that Patriots' head coach Bill Belichick called Craft and various NFL offices repeatedly, trying to ensure his team a chance to play in London.

Yeah, right. And goldfish live in trees?

In typical Belichick-ism, he deflected questions surrounding the 2009 game in London with the usual comments: "I want to focus on the players we have here," or "I'm worried about the 2008 season right now."

The NFL has its share of problems. From disruptive players, to feeling the pinch of a stagnant economy, to addressing the matter that the average life of an NFL head coach seems to be about six quarters long, the NFL needs a good and productive endeavor. And, according at least to commissioner Roger Goodell, they have found one in the annual game in London.

But, seriously, who had to sell this game to Bill Belichick? I for one would like to see the extensive physical mutialition that would have been endured if anybody but Craft or Goodell had to break the news to him.

Belichick is so anti-everything-that-has-to-with-fo
-plays that few would put it past him to try to "Bill Belichick" the New England Patriots.

We will wake up the day after the October 25th game (if we can figure out the time-zone exchange by then) to read blaring headlines such as "Belichick Goes Bananas in London: Starts Brady at Linebacker."

Until then, I guess "It is what it is."

Posted on: January 4, 2009 9:41 pm

Patriots to Franchise Matt Cassel

According to several reports, the New England Patriots are going to make quarterback Matt Cassel their franchise player for the 2009 season. Cassel will be set to make the average of the top five salaries at the position, which will net him around $10 million, more than what Tom Brady will earn.

Cassel finished the final year of his rookie contract the way that players dream to perform in a contract year, not only getting the chance to fill in for Brady, but also putting up impressive numbers and leading the Patriots to an 11-5 record. Although missing the playoffs for the first time since the 2002 season, Cassel was instrumental for a team that lost 14 players to the injured reserve list, including Brady and starting running back Lawrence Maroney.

Cassel's achievements cannot be overlooked for a team whose Super Bowl expectations almost evaporated when Bernard Pollard fell on Brady's knee, forcing him out for the season. It took a few games before Cassel truly hit his form, but by mid-season, he was turning in performances that even Brady had not accomplished.

In week 11, Cassel not only scorched the Jets defense for 400 yards passing, but drove the Patriots down the field with no timeouts to tie the game on a remarkable touchdown pass to Randy Moss. In the following week, Cassel torched the eventual AFC East champion Miami Dolphins for 415 yards. Brady has only recorded one 400+ yard passing game in his entire career.

Although there are whispers of Brady being far behind his rehabilitation schedule; far enough to question his status for the 2009 season. If Brady's knee clears up and he is ready for the season opener, Cassel will be traded to one of a number of teams in need of a quarterback.

Cassel's success, however, should be questioned by other clubs before they make plans to acquire him through a trade. Cassel plays with two Pro Bowl receivers and behind an equally talented offensive line, not to mention Bill Belichick and one of the most sought after assistant coaches in Josh McDaniels. He is younger than Brady, and while some extremists in New England have pondered whether to keep Cassel and trade Brady, it is overwhelming likely that Cassel will be moved if Brady is a go come September.

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