When dealing with Moss aftermath, out-of-character Belichick treads lightly

League insiders have been buzzing about the decision of Patriots coach Bill Belichick to conduct an unscheduled press conference on Thursday regarding the trade of receiver Randy Moss.  As one source observed, the move was “out of character” for Belichick, and it conflicted with his history when it comes to matters of this nature.

In matters of this nature, Belichick’s usual approach is to say as little as possible, preferably nothing.

The fact that Belichick spoke so glowingly about Moss seems to be even more confusing in light of the mounting evidence that he was becoming a problem in the locker room.  As one source explained it, Moss was behaving at times like the Moss of old, but he was smarter about when and where he would act up, in order to avoid creating tangible, public proof of an attitude that laid the foundation for the team’s decision to move on, at a time when Moss made it clear that he wanted to move out.

So why would Belichick feel compelled to come out and contradict the various reports of things that occurred away from cameras and microphones?  Our own hypothesis/theory/spitball is that Belichick knows Moss better than Moss knows Moss, and that Belichick knows that, with a game against Moss coming up in three weeks, the last thing Belichick should do is provide Randy with any extra motivation to have a big game.

Time and again, we’ve seen Moss — who indeed plays when he wants to play — respond to outside influences that pushed him to choose to play, and to play hard.  Moss already will be driven to have a big game when he returns to Gillette Stadium on Halloween.  We think that Belichick wants to be sure Moss doesn’t come to New England dressed up as the 1998 version of himself.

58 responses to “When dealing with Moss aftermath, out-of-character Belichick treads lightly

  1. Ummm……………….That actually makes sense.
    I hate to say this, but I actually agr…..a……agre………..aggrr………….agree with you.
    Let’s not make a habit of all this sense-making. It’s much less fun.

  2. oh come on…you think belichick said all this because he was gameplaning for 1 game ? what about moss who said nothing but good things about belichick ? why didnt moss say anything bad ?
    and saying this will make moss come and play crappy in 4 weeks ?
    he just wanted to come out and debunk all bad theories about moss . both parties had an amicable divorce and there is nothing to it.
    sometimes what you see is what is there .not much else.. all past trades/cuts belichick has done he has never criticized the player for anything.

  3. Bill was being genuine. Like I said in a previous post Moss will not find the football love he found here in New England – the football love he was always searching for.

  4. Could also be that MOSS is going to be a free agent at the end of the season, and slick Willy might want to make a run at signing him. Smart move. Trade him now, get 2 picks and resign him next season at a cheaper rate. Nice move ….Maybe!

  5. Nice guess Florio….and you might even be accurate for once, but please know:
    Belichik is the ultimate chess player and is always 3 steps ahead of the competition (and a mile ahead of the media morons such as yourself). If he held an unscheduled press conference, it was for a purpose….and a purpose that would help his football team competitively.

  6. For Moss to have a big game in NE on Halloween, he’s going to need Favre to play like Randall Cunningham, Jeff George, Daunte Culpepper, Matt Cassell, or Tom Brady in their primes. Anyone see that happening?
    Oh, and Favre…if you’re trying to get with a woman, sending a picture of your hog is right up there with making jokes about rape and telling her she’s fat on the “Do Not Do” list. Unless you’re hung like Peter North, that is.

  7. Florio, do you have to beat every story to death ?
    Maybe a therapist could help you, then again …….maybe your already over medicated .

  8. Should be an interesting game, but I stand by Belichick’s decision on letting him go. If he knew that they were not going to sign him at the end of the season then might as well get what you can for him.
    Side note: I have heard nothing else about the supposed Vincent Jackson trade though…. I always thought he was a great receiver on the Chargers though.

  9. I really doubt BB held a presser because he is scared of Moss coming to town. More like there was a lot of pressure for him to speak on the topic and the two parties have a non-disclosure agreement in place.
    With all of the stuff around the Moss trade, cooking up a story like this one for hits just seems weird.

  10. It’s called respect… plan and simply, Moss provided tons of production and leadership in his 3 years in New England and Belichick is acknowledging this

  11. I think you think wrong. Moss was being scripted out of NE’s offense and he knew it as well as he knew he was not in the teams plan for 2011. He asked to be traded and gave his preferred teams to BB, who accomodated. There is no evidence he was shoppped.
    The tell to me was the play in the first half of the Dolphins game when the Pats went max protect and sent Moss streaking down the field. Unlike the Jets game, Brady dumped the ball to an uncovered rookie for a big gain. The play was called back for a penalty, but it spoke volumes about what was going on in the Pats head.

  12. If Belichick said nothing, the media would be bitching about how “Belichick said nothing”! Now Belichick is more fashionably and politically correct and says a little something to appease the masses and the media is still bitching. Having played music my whole life and getting around a little who cares what the media or public think……….let’s stick to what happens on the field………………….God I miss those John Facenda narrated highlights!!!

  13. I don’t agree with your theory Florio.
    Here’s mine: Belichick never wanted to trade Moss. This was Bob and Myra Kraft’s decision.
    The Krafts were paying Randy 9 million a year while Moss was increasingly embarassing the organization. First Randy said the Patriots don’t pay. Then, a couple months ago Bob Kraft held his annual fundraising gala. This is a very important night for the Krafts and I believe Patriot players are required to attend (as part of their contract) and smooze the corporate big-wigs.
    Randy was a complete ass at this years function. He refused to talk with anyone and instead leaned against the wall with his headphones on. I believe this infuriated the Krafts.
    When Moss was first traded to New England Bob Kraft had a discussion with Randy and made his expectations clear. I’m sure Bob Kraft told Randy he would be shipped out if he violated these expectations.
    That’s exactly what happened.

  14. Belichick was heading off this distraction before it got up enough steam to become a “Favre-esque” drama of epic proportions. It also doesn’t hurt that he was putting a positive spin on the move for the benefit of future Free Agents, after having so deftly parted ways with burgeoning cancers-in-the-midst like Joey Galloway Adalius Thomas, Shawn Springs and Laurence Maroney.
    Meet the new Boss, same as the old Boss.

  15. If Belichick had ripped Moss you’d have made a post saying it proved you right.
    Belichick doesn’t rip Moss, and you make a post saying it proves you right.
    Utter garbage.
    How about Belichick saw that the media were using untrue stories to paint an inaccurate picture of Moss’ actions and wanted to stick up for him?

  16. With the Patriots it’s all about the future. Your contract reflects what the team (Belichick) feels you can expect to produce. There are no lifetime achievement awards. That’s why Moss did not get the contract he wanted.
    That said, what purpose is served by ripping a player on his way out the door? It’s only makes future free agents think twice about coming here if the team is going to rip them. That’s why BB made nice in the presser.
    I’m a big fan of Belichick, but like 31 other head coaches, he lies. He said that Moss was never a problem and the two never had issues in Moss’s 4 years in New England. Guess Belichick forgot about Moss not showing up late for practice (snow storm) last and being sent home.

  17. Moss is a veteran player that was well respected & liked by his Patriot teammates. Could be that Belichick spoke glowingly of Moss in order to keep moral high in his own locker room.

  18. This *sounds* like a credible theory, but I think that Moss is going to play hard vs. New England on Halloween regardless. Does anyone actually believe that since Bellicheck said some nice things about Moss at a press conference that he won’t be going all out to beat the team that “didn’t appreciate him” on Halloween? After all, Moss still knows they didn’t sign him and shipped him off for a 3rd round pick — that’s regardless of any lip service that Bellicheck can pay.

  19. This was all about the money and Belichick wanting to avoid any future blow ups with Moss. He probably does like Moss and didn’t want to see Moss blow up the locker room. All of this, including the aftermath, is better for Moss and the Patriots. Any blow up would have hurt Moss in his next deal and also hurt the Patriots. The way this was handled makes both Moss and the Patriots look okay.

  20. it could be any number or reasons. What if Belicheck actually likes moss and just wanted to set the record straight? Or what if he didn’t want to make it seem that a player was able to shoot his way out of the locker room. or maybe he was getting a lot of interview requests and he thought the easiest way would be to just address it via a press conference.

  21. This was like one of those stupid trades that the computer pulls off in the 5th season of your Madden franchise mode.

  22. BB handled Moss with kid gloves during his entire stay in New England, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that he is still doing the same thing.
    I think it is more likely that BB wanted to head off any potential conversations about a disconnect between the players and the organization, while at the same tome demonstrating to the players how to behave through the media. I think the past year’s issues- Adalius Thomas situation, players sent home for late practices and the comments from Logan Mankins- has changed the image of the Patriots organization a bit. I think the Patriots value the positive image (unlike, say, the Jets) and are making decisions to correct this. It starts at the top, and BB understands this.

  23. Bill Belichick looked like he was ready to break down during the press conference. He answered two questions with the standard statements about younger players stepping up that many coaches have used when a key player is lost due to an unexpected injury. He’ll have to plan for that safety that won’t be helping cover Randy Moss now.

  24. Here’s a theory.
    Randy realized the Patriots offense was going to be more spread out affecting his stats.
    Stats that he will need to get his last big contract.
    Asked BB to be traded for this reason.
    BB actually likes and respects Randy and agreed.
    Sent him back to Minny to Favre who happens to throw the long ball better then most QB’s in the league. (No underthrows anymore).
    I think he lights it up in Minny this year and will get the contract that he wants.
    BB did him a favor.

  25. I think that’s just Bill being Bill and if there was any sort of conflict he wants it to remain in house, between him and Randy. And really that’s where it should stay. Why does the public need to know? Randy is gone and in a place where he wants to be, the Patriots are free of him and got compensation. Media keeps this story alive, I think both parties are ready to move on with there current situations. Randy has a game to prepare for on Monday night and the Patriots have a bye to plan how they will revamp the passing game with Moss.
    It’s Friday, let’s move on from this story.

  26. imabigdog says:
    October 8, 2010 8:21 AM
    Could also be that MOSS is going to be a free agent at the end of the season, and slick Willy might want to make a run at signing him. Smart move. Trade him now, get 2 picks and resign him next season at a cheaper rate. Nice move ….Maybe!
    _______________________
    Never thought about that very good point and i wouldnt put it past belichick.

  27. Im surprised everyone in general seems to have been taking this pretty lightly. Not just the team, but also the fans. Moss whining his way out of town just set a bad precedent. Athletes are given a contract to perform for the team, you cant just turn around and trade them to a contender for pennies on the dollar when they complain. It almost condones that behavior.
    also by doing this, the Patriots just waved the white flag on the season. They arent as good as the Jets so the division is out. With Baltimore and Pittsburgh both playing in the same division, one of the wild cards is coming from there.
    It just didnt make any sense no matter how you slice it. Tom Brady is supposed to be a leader in that locker room, and he seemed totally uninterested in this. This just killed their passing attack, and with no run game and no secondary on top of it, theyre screwed

  28. Funny how Belichick is considered a “genius” now with New England, yet nobody ever dared mentioned his name with that word in the same sentence when he was in Cleveland.
    My, what time, a good owner and competent QB can do for perception, huh???
    All I know is that BB has certainly made Favre’s job a little more enjoyable.

  29. I think you think wrong. Moss was being scripted out of NE’s offense and he knew it as well as he knew he was not in the teams plan for 2011. He asked to be traded and gave his preferred teams to BB, who accomodated. There is no evidence he was shoppped.
    ____________________________
    Not only is there no evidence Moss was being shopped, there’s evidence to the contrary. There have been people from various front offices who have spoken to reporters saying they never had a chance to negotiate with the Pats for Moss, and that it seemed like it was going to be Moss to the Vikings from the outset. They also said they understood it under the circumstances. Personally, I think BB made the comments he did out of respect for what Moss did as a Patriot. It’s also been said that Moss had a tremendous amount of respect for BB. BB could have simply been returning the favor. Besides, if you listened to what BB said, he said that he never once had any problems with Moss, and that Moss had never shown him the slightest disrespect. He never said that Moss never had an issue with any of the assistants. If Moss did have an argument with an assistant, he’d hardly be the first. The only difference is that Moss at least kept it out of the public eye (unlike Boldin and Haley).

  30. When Bill makes a statement about winning games in the past decade that is his way of saying.
    ” you guys do your job and I’ll do mine. Which by the way I seem to do very well “

  31. Florio said: “We think that Belichick wants to be sure Moss doesn’t come to New England dressed up as the 1998 version of himself.”
    So you think Belichick believes Moss will be more likely to half-ass the game versus the Patriots by calling a special smoochy-smooch press conference … with Randy playing to hit the market for his last epic payday.
    That sounds absurd that Belichick would believe something so inane.
    It sounds even more preposterous that anyone would believe Belichick is that stupid.
    Sorry Mike — lots of great stuff here, but you swung and missed on this one.

  32. Maybe Belichek knows that Randy Moss is a bright guy. So when Bill starts babbling about “team”…and all his other nonsense….he knows Randy sees right through it…can see Logan Mankins pissed off as all hell for Bill and Kraft lying to him….attempting to humiliate him….maybe he just let Randy walk because Randy aint buying none of Bill’s garbage. He praised plenty of players right before he gave them the boot…Randy aint no fool.

  33. Face the facts, Moss is a diva and NE has too many young players to cater to a diva’s demands. Add to that a contract that ends in a few months so you might as well get something now than zero later on.
    But the underlying story is how Childress loves to say he has out-smarted Bellicheat (see the Percy Harvin draft story details) With Bellicheat’s ego at stake, he decides to create trouble in the Viking’s locker room by shipping Moss into a situation where BrINT is already calling the shots and Childress is already BrINT’s bitch, lets see how he hanldes two diva’s.
    That’s my theory.

  34. BB knows how the NFL works, even though Randy wanted out! If Bill blows him up, who could he get to trade for him…This is completely in Character for Chilly! Well ya know Bill, I got a lot of issues already here in Vikingland. I will get killed for bringing in another Diva, locker room distraction!
    OK Chilly I promise I’ll keep a lid on that, hell I’ll even say he is a great team leader. I’ll even do an extra press conference!
    Win, win… You get Moss, Favre will be happy. I get a 3rd and remove a stone from my shoe, deal? I can’t prove a word of it! I bet this is very accurate!

  35. Hauschild says:
    October 8, 2010 9:28 AM
    Funny how Belichick is considered a “genius” now with New England, yet nobody ever dared mentioned his name with that word in the same sentence when he was in Cleveland.
    My, what time, a good owner and competent QB can do for perception, huh???
    All I know is that BB has certainly made Favre’s job a little more enjoyable.
    ————————-
    The reason he was hired in Cleveland was because of his coaching ability with the defense.
    Implying that he just got lucky because of Brady is wrong.
    By that logic you could say the same thing about Bill Walsh in San Francisco, his win lose record was not very good before he drafted Montana in the 3rd round.
    And lets not forget how bad of an organization Cleveland was when he got there.
    And he did take them from 5-11 to 11-5 and beat big Bill in the playoffs.

  36. Why can’t you just accept that there is mutual respect between Belichick and Moss, that probably both understand the passion and dedication the other brings to the table, that they understand how being uber-passionate about what you do sometimes leads to outbursts, and that they simply respect one another so much that they can put the childish play other people would fall into aside, and just agree on doing something to solve a situation (The Pats offense no longer being a truly great fit for Moss) which works for both?
    If Belichick wouldn’t have such a respect for Moss, he could’ve given him the AD treatment.
    He didn’t. For a reason.

  37. One part of this story that has not been discussed enough- had the Patriots kept Moss for teh remainder of the season and let him walk, they would have received a fifth round compensatory pick. The ultimate choice to let him go now resulted in giving up Moss (for 12 games), a 5th round pick and a 7th round pick for the Vikings 3rd round pick.
    BB did not really need to say much more. The actions of the Patriots clearly said enough of the feelings about Moss….

  38. vataha says:
    October 8, 2010 9:21 AM
    Here’s a theory.
    Randy realized the Patriots offense was going to be more spread out affecting his stats.
    Stats that he will need to get his last big contract.
    Asked BB to be traded for this reason.
    BB actually likes and respects Randy and agreed.
    Sent him back to Minny to Favre who happens to throw the long ball better then most QB’s in the league. (No underthrows anymore).
    I think he lights it up in Minny this year and will get the contract that he wants.
    BB did him a favor.
    ===============================
    Favre is one of the worst deep ball throwers in the league. They are often underthrown or overthrown by a mile and rarely hit a receiver in stride. Throughout his career it is one of his biggest negatives (that and all the interceptions).
    Look at that TD to Harvin last week. Nobody within 15 yards of Harvin and he still had to dive to make the catch.

  39. Bill Belichick did the team a good service by speaking about the Randy Moss trade. He always uses the standard line of “We will talk about the players that are with the team.” The story could have dragged out for the whole week around Foxboro. BB does not want any media distractions concerning players no longer with the team. The focus now is to get the young players to attain a high level of play on a consistant basis, no easy task. His respect for Randy as a player is genuine and their time together proves this. The offensive is changing and Randy’s role became diminished. The Patriots are not going to lose games because Randy is now in Minn. They will lose because the young defense makes a great deal of errors in playing their gaps and backfield assignments. This is going to require total focus in order to compete with those rat bastards 200 miles south of here.

  40. “Coach follows own advice and refuses to give playmaker on an opposing team any potential posterboard material to use for motivation ahead of upcoming game.”

  41. From Minnesota to Boston to Twitter, what “The Streets is Saying” about the Randy Moss trade … http:/ /clicky.me/MossTrade

  42. Belichick doesn’t want to lose the locker room, and there was respect there for Moss. He wants it to seem like Randy got what he wanted, and it’s best for everyone.
    Plus, I think BB respected Moss, wants to keep the door open for a return on the cheap, wants to seem like a nice guy to get VJ and others to come to town… wants to placate Brady on some level, since he must be pissed off, too.
    BB… smarter than us.

  43. Belichick held a press conference to take the pressure off his players still there. They were coming off 2 days off and the press had access to them that afternoon. Bill got up to the mic and set the standard the team will use for talking about it instead of saying nothing and having all the players ambused by reporters.He really said the usual nothing, just we are grateful and the same blah blah he says when asked about the next team they play (he always builds up the next team to be Superbowl winners no matter who it is.) So not out of character, and smart to set the line(as a leader) and take presure off his team. What did he say- “No Toms a player, he doesn’t make those decisions” You and I know Tom had more input than nothing, but we know what Tom will say – “Players play and coaches coach” then heap praise on Moss

  44. JimmySmith says:
    October 8, 2010 9:51 AM
    Face the facts, Moss is a diva and NE has too many young players to cater to a diva’s demands. Add to that a contract that ends in a few months so you might as well get something now than zero later on.
    But the underlying story is how Childress loves to say he has out-smarted Bellicheat (see the Percy Harvin draft story details) With Bellicheat’s ego at stake, he decides to create trouble in the Viking’s locker room by shipping Moss into a situation where BrINT is already calling the shots and Childress is already BrINT’s bitch, lets see how he hanldes two diva’s.
    That’s my theory.
    ===============================
    That’s your fairy tale. You are quaking in your mommy’s pumps worried about how much the packers are going to get beat by the Vikes this year.

  45. No evidence to support that theroy of any kind.
    Geez, Moss hasn’t even been playing in a fly-over state for a week yet, and already the sports media has turned on him by unleashing this massive “he’s a punk” PR assault. Give the guy a friggin break. The Pats didn’t want him, clearly, and he’s always wanted to play with Brett Favre, and always wanted to win a championship for Minnesota. Seems like the media is trying really hard to put a negative spin on this, even though it seems like a win-win for everyone.

  46. Story on ESPN states that Brady and Dione Branch have been tweeting for over a week about Branch’s possible return to New england.
    Would suggest that this trade has been in the works for over a week and that Brady knew about it!
    Randy was ready to shoot his way out of town because he wasn’t getting extended. The rest is a smokescreen! The offense was going in a differint direction and everyone on the team knew it.
    Carefully look how Moss’s targets went down for the last few games and it becomes apparent!
    BB doesn’t wait for crises mode if he can help it!
    Same deal with Seymour. He started a year early with how big of a contract he was going to get! They had no intentions of resigning him. Traded to the Raiders, who franchised him!
    The second half of the Jets game was the turning point!

  47. All you clowns trying to spell dirt bags name….just say Bellicheat…much easier and more accurate!

  48. Belichick is brutally emotion-free in his decision-making, but he’s always been very gracious, even sentimental in his comments when players he really likes retire or are traded. He nearly cried when talking about Tedy Bruschi at Bruschi’s retirement announcement, and his comments about Rodney Harrison, Troy Brown, and even Mike Vrabel (when he was traded) were more generous and sincere than you’d expect from most coaches. If you’re not his kind of player, though, the silence can be deafening (is that you, Adalius Thomas?)
    The bottom line is that veteran players seem to like playing for Belichick, and you have to ask why. Players say that he is very, very honest and straightforward with them, and that he respects people who love the game, work hard, and embrace the team concept. My bet is this: that, out of respect to Moss, BB told him candidly that they probably weren’t going to give him the deal he could get elsewhere, that his numbers wouldn’t be as good this year because the offense was shifting more to the new TEs, and he’d probably command better offers with a team that would throw to him more. Then he puts Moss in the perfect position to get a huge deal next year – a desperate team with a gunslinger QB. I think that’s something other players would have to respect.
    Oh – and there’s no “evidence” at friction with Moss. Lots of speculation, but nobody has actually said he was a problem or would be a problem.

  49. dbartdog says:
    October 8, 2010 12:18 PM
    All you clowns trying to spell dirt bags name….just say Bellicheat…much easier and more accurate!
    ——
    Or change the name from dbartdog to HATER…

  50. it was all about the locker room.
    welker intimated that randy’s act was getting old.
    some other folks probly were more than ready to mutiny a la the 31-0 loss to buffalo when milloy got released right before the 2003 opener. and picked up by buffalo.

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