If the Patriots have proven one thing during Bill Belichick's nearly 20-year reign as head coach, it's that the only thing they're better at than winning Super Bowls is giving as little information as possible when speaking to the media.
If you've ever watched a press conference that involved any member of the Patriots organization, there's a good chance you learned absolutely nothing, and as it turns out, that's actually by design.
During a recent interview on "The Rich Eisen Show," former Patriots quarterback Doug Flutie explained why most interviews with Patriots players are so boring. Apparently, part of the "Patriot Way" is to be as vague as possible with the media, because if you say too much, you might accidentally give away part of the team's game plan.
Belichick sees that happening with other players around the league, which is why he has his coaching staff scour the internet for player quotes during the week leading up to a game.
"The thing that amazed me was the amount of information Bill would take in early in the week to prepare his game plan," Flutie said. "He has people reading every article, every comment that comes from an opposing locker room gets read, filtered through. The amount of information that you can pick up from all the interviews the other players are doing and things they say about a game plan -- they don't mean to be telling it -- but there is a lot of information that is given away."
To keep that from happening in New England, Belichick basically orders everyone to only say the bare minimum during a press conference, which leads to all the dull interviews you see with Belichick and other members of the organization.
"That's why Bill Belichick is the most boring interview in the country," Flutie said. "Bill is not going to give you one thing. He's going to get on top of his guys not to say a word: Be generic, be bland, don't give away information, because there is a ton of information given away."
According to Flutie, who played for the Patriots in 2005, there's so much information "given away" by other teams that the Patriots literally implement it into their game plan for the week.
"It amazed me, because in their scouting reports and in their game plans how detailed they could be and how right on they could be because of information that came out of a press conference," Flutie said.
As for Belichick, although he'll sometimes go on a 700-word tangent, that's the exception, not the norm. In most of his other press conferences, Belichick keeps his answers short and not so sweet, or he'll just avoid every question by giving the same answer every time (you might remember this happening press conference of 2014).
Basically, Belichick has mastered the art of talking without actually saying anything.
The best part about all of this is that the Patriots' unofficial media policy is so well-known that even their newest players are aware of it. After being selected by the Patriots during the third round of the NFL Draft, Chase Winovich went full Belichick on the media.
Chase Winovich tells New England media that he doesn’t want to say what his pre-draft contact was with the Patriots until he gets more instructions about what he can say. Gotta love the honesty— Ben Volin (@BenVolin) April 27, 2019
That's the Patriot Way.
If that first interview is any indication, Winovich is going to be the perfect Patriot.