Skip to content

League, NFLPA may want to look at Belichick-Hernandez texts

Hernandez AP

Setting aside for now the idea that a guy who seemingly avoids interpersonal communication whenever and wherever possible somehow generated 33 pages of text messages with one person over a four-month period, the content of those exchanges between Patriots coach Bill Belichick and former Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez from February through May of 2013 could be of interest to the league office for competitive reasons.

The labor deal signed in August 2011 placed new limits on the extent to which coaches can coach players in the offseason.  Prior to the start of the offseason workout program in April of each year, meetings between coaches and player are prohibited, and “players’ activities may not be directed or supervised by any coaches.”

It’s unclear what that quote, taken from Article 21, Section 2(a)(iv) of the CBA, actually means.  If interpreted as broadly as it seems to be written, any texts from Belichick that could be construed as any direction or supervision of Hernandez’s football-related activities could ultimately be a problem.

This assumes that the league or the NFLPA would even be inclined to do anything about it.  The Peyton Manning/Adam Gase Tuscaloosan rendezvous was by all appearances swept under Nick Saban’s pile of Little Debbie wrappers.  The folks in charge of enforcing the rules seem to realize that there’s some play in the joints, especially when contact during non-contact practices blows out a guy’s knee without consequence.  (Other than the blown-out knee.)

Regardless of whether the texts show supervision and direction that violates the letter of the CBA, the 33 pages will shed plenty of light on the real Bill Belichick, a guy who has managed to keep most of himself tightly concealed from view — with the lone exception of the documentary he uncharacteristically allowed NFL Films to produce a few years back.  It could be that Belichick was simply keeping closer tabs on Hernandez during the first offseason in which the player had an enormous amount of cash in his bank account, thanks to the long-term contract signed the prior August.  Still, if/when the text messages ever come to light, the words thumb-typed by the cryptic coach will be scrutinized for any hint that Belichick knew or should have known that Hernandez was behaving irrationally or otherwise at risk of doing something incredibly stupid and/or criminal while left to his own devices.

And if there’s any plausible reason to think that Belichick feared Hernandez was heading down the wrong path only a few weeks before allegedly killing Odin Lloyd and failed to do anything about it, the questions will get a lot more serious and pointed than whether Belichick was coaching players at a time on the calendar when coaching wasn’t allowed.

For that reason, there’s a very good chance that the Patriots will do everything they can to ensure that the text messages never are disclosed.  Hopefully by employing a better procedure than the one used to secure their Johnny Football scouting report.

Permalink 69 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Aaron Hernandez case, Home, New England Patriots, Rumor Mill
69 Responses to “League, NFLPA may want to look at Belichick-Hernandez texts”
  1. thestrategyexpert says: Jul 16, 2014 12:22 PM

    I’d like to see them too, I like hunting for evidence of past mistakes and then trying to learn from those expeditions.

  2. robert831 says: Jul 16, 2014 12:26 PM

    Both of them really aren’t as good at concealing evidence as we thought.

  3. seanmmartin says: Jul 16, 2014 12:26 PM

    BBAHtext parody tweeter acct

  4. steelerben says: Jul 16, 2014 12:27 PM

    Limiting the contact between coaches and players in the offseason was done to prevent teams from driving the players year round. And when viewed through that lens it makes total sense.

    The problem with it, however, is that all these young men running around with tons of cash and no supervision are landing in tons of trouble. A lot of times the coach is a father figure and could help keep guys out of jail and on the straight and narrow.

  5. dirtdawg54 says: Jul 16, 2014 12:27 PM

    Well, first of all, the Patriots would never do anything that constituted a bending of the rules, never mind outright cheating. That simply wouldn’t be the Patriot way.

    Secondly, the texts largely went like this:

    Hernandez: Coach. Killed someone.

    BB: Can you still catch?

    Hernandez: Yep.

    BB: everything is good. Unless there is videotape.

    Hernandez: um, about that …

    BB: good grief. Not again!

  6. ufanforreal says: Jul 16, 2014 12:29 PM

    Goodell will do as he did in spygate, say there was nothing there and trash it.

  7. catquick says: Jul 16, 2014 12:29 PM

    Cheating once again

  8. thevikesarebest says: Jul 16, 2014 12:33 PM

    3rd most classless organization in sports right behind the packers and the shehawks.

  9. scrp2 says: Jul 16, 2014 12:36 PM

    Belichick: I need you to video tape the Jets practice.

    Hernandez: I don’t know Bill. It feels wrong

    Belichick: Just do it!!

  10. crush22 says: Jul 16, 2014 12:39 PM

    Once a cheater…….

  11. craniator says: Jul 16, 2014 12:41 PM

    Wait a minute , aren’t we still supposed to be talking about Jonathan Martin , Richie Incognito and “BullyGate” ?

  12. politicallyincorrect says: Jul 16, 2014 12:41 PM

    wonder if the league will destroy these?

    Pats are not a class org; irks me how Kraft and BB had been protected and promoted by the league

    I was duped is not an acceptable excuse! hear it too much with this org

  13. bskeezy000 says: Jul 16, 2014 12:42 PM

    I’m actually very anxious to see these texts, just because I’m 95% sure Belichick uses emojis.

  14. bradyisyourdaddy says: Jul 16, 2014 12:43 PM

    Woody Johnson will bankrupt himself to get these to the public

  15. TheWizard says: Jul 16, 2014 12:43 PM

    Bill is already on to his next mode of clandestine player contact in the offseason.

    He probably just appears before them as a vision once a day, uttering the sacred play diagram.

  16. usmutts says: Jul 16, 2014 12:43 PM

    Bill Belilchick is to Nick Saban
    As Dick Cheney is to Donald Rumsfeld

  17. realitycheckbaby says: Jul 16, 2014 12:44 PM

    BB covering up?

  18. mattwalshvideo says: Jul 16, 2014 12:44 PM

    They were “duped”……..

    Goodell is going Lois Lerner and destroying it all.

  19. ragnarthemagnificent says: Jul 16, 2014 12:50 PM

    Wildbill: That was a killer game you played out there today

    Hernandez: You don’t know the half of it

    Wildbill: Glad you finally got things together in your life

    Hernandez: Uh….

    Wildbill: lol j/k. btw how is your friend Odin doing?

    Hernandez: Hung out with him the other night. had a blast

  20. lflib69 says: Jul 16, 2014 12:51 PM

    All you morons come on here and name call (cheater) yet you fail to provide proof of actual cheating. Get off the Hater Bandwagon and act like intelligent men if you can.

  21. therealdave123 says: Jul 16, 2014 12:55 PM

    I’d hardly call this “cheating”. Football wise nothing was gained, but alas bring on the Patriot haters.

  22. joeflaccoallday says: Jul 16, 2014 12:56 PM

    Lol I’m never suprised about this kind of stuff with the Patriots now. Seems as though Belichick always doing something illegal.

  23. jredshoes says: Jul 16, 2014 12:59 PM

    Jeez, It’s not like Belicheck shot someone or blew off half his friends face

  24. cpitch12 says: Jul 16, 2014 1:00 PM

    The more you hate …the better we are …….keep hating…just means we are that much better…….

  25. stillers213 says: Jul 16, 2014 1:00 PM

    I don’t think what he did was wrong. What the hell is wrong with texting a guy he was probably trying to help? Maybe if Hernandez had more father figures in his life he wouldn’t be sitting where he is right now. I’m sure the last thing on coach’s mind was that he was about to go murder someone. Most of this article is very speculative.

  26. yohochecko says: Jul 16, 2014 1:01 PM

    “a guy who seemingly avoids interpersonal communication whenever and wherever possible somehow generated 33 pages of text messages with one person over a four-month period”

    You guys in the media need to understand that there is a difference between not wanting to talk TO THE MEDIA and avoiding interpersonal conversation. By most insider accounts, Belichick is a funny, personable guy.

  27. stillers213 says: Jul 16, 2014 1:05 PM

    “33 pages of text messages”

    I would be willing to bet that one page represents exactly 1 text, even if only a one word sentence. Then, you have to subtract the header and signature pages of this text report as well, of course.

  28. tedmurph says: Jul 16, 2014 1:07 PM

    There’s a difference between obtaining a search warrant for Hernandez phone because there’s probable cause the content may aid in a murder investigation and the NFL or NFLPA wanting to see them because they may violate some pissant, unenforcable rule. They’ll never see them, nor should they see anyone’s personal texts. Probably not related to coaching anyway. I doubt BB texts 90 players during the offseason to personally coach them. Now that the daily shot at the Pats has been taken, time to move on. Nothing to see here.

  29. mikeyhigs says: Jul 16, 2014 1:08 PM

    How many text messages would sure be a better description than “33 pages of text messages.” How many are on a page?

    And please, even if Belichick ” feared Hernandez was heading down the wrong path,” what the heck was he supposed to do about it? Unless Hernandez said that he was gonna murder somebody, Bill can’t be expected to do anything. I’m not a Pats fan, but don’t start trying to blame ANYONE else for Hernandez’s actions.

  30. jnbnet says: Jul 16, 2014 1:20 PM

    lflib69 says:
    Jul 16, 2014 12:51 PM
    All you morons come on here and name call (cheater) yet you fail to provide proof of actual cheating. Get off the Hater Bandwagon and act like intelligent men if you can.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++=
    They can’t.

  31. irishlad19 says: Jul 16, 2014 1:21 PM

    The envy and jealousy about the Pats’ winning record during the Belichick/Kraft/Brady era is amusing, mostly from fans of teams that haven’t won consistently in years.
    Come on, grow up and give credit to an amazing team.

  32. melikefootball says: Jul 16, 2014 1:22 PM

    Gödel will turn his head once more.

  33. crownofthehelmet says: Jul 16, 2014 1:26 PM

    Nevermind that, I’d like to see the texts between BB and Brady. I’m guessing a lot of BFF references.

  34. originalbosfan1 says: Jul 16, 2014 1:27 PM

    I really do hope the media eventually realizes that not being chatty and personable with the media is not the same thing as not being personable in general. Anybody who knows Belichick will tell you he’s a personable, good-natured guy (who admittedly is pretty serious about football). But somehow the media still believes he’s this evil specter from the great beyond simply because he doesn’t hang around and answer their asinine questions for hours on end.

  35. whatnojets says: Jul 16, 2014 1:29 PM

    No surprised at all. Typical “Patriots Way” of doing business.

  36. theageofquarrel says: Jul 16, 2014 1:34 PM

    “LEAVE BILL ALONE!!!!!” – All of Patriots crybaby fanbase

  37. elyasm says: Jul 16, 2014 1:34 PM

    Nice reference to the Johnny Manziel scouting report that was widely discredited as a forgery shortly after its release.

  38. grabgrabgrab says: Jul 16, 2014 1:34 PM

    Textgate begins. It seems Wild Bill is always involved in some sort of “gate”.

  39. madddogg365 says: Jul 16, 2014 1:40 PM

    This is Bill Belichick. Even when there’s proof, he’s innocent. If not, the Patriot’s organization will pay all of his fines. NOW THE SAINTS……..different story! lol NO EVIDENCE…but guilty…that is until it’s proven they aren’t playoff bound. Then they will still be guilty to almost everyone.

  40. abninf says: Jul 16, 2014 1:41 PM

    lflib69 says:
    Jul 16, 2014 12:51 PM
    All you morons come on here and name call (cheater) yet you fail to provide proof of actual cheating.
    ====================================

    If Belichick getting a $500,000 fine in 2007 isn’t enough for you then nothing will be.

  41. ufanforreal says: Jul 16, 2014 1:50 PM

    lflib69 says: Jul 16, 2014 12:51 PM

    All you morons come on here and name call (cheater) yet you fail to provide proof of actual cheating. Get off the Hater Bandwagon and act like intelligent men if you can.
    ——————————————————
    Hard to have evidence that was destroyed to prevent proof of cheating.

  42. nomar8477 says: Jul 16, 2014 1:55 PM

    I love how all the haters are already convicting Belichick for something..when they have no idea what he did. Shows the level of intelligence. “We have no idea..but just blame him..he must have done something…so now I have an opinion..on…well..nothing really”..Brilliant guys.

    It could very well be Bill telling Aaron to chill out and stay straight..and thats it.

  43. surfinbird1 says: Jul 16, 2014 2:00 PM

    This is the same time frame that Hernandez almost got in trouble in California for smashing his then girlfriends window. Belicheck found out about it and exploded on Hernandez and told him to straighten his ass out or be cut or traded. I would not be surprised if this was a big part of it. Btw who uses texting to keep things secret? I would think phone calls might be better.

  44. scw1993 says: Jul 16, 2014 2:05 PM

    The jealousy of this team is so funny. Still waiting for megahead’s punishment for meeting with his OC….swept under the rug is right. NFL royalty doesn’t have to follow any rules. Btw, who in the league or NFLPA has asked for texts? Or is it just off-season speculation from boredom.

  45. fishyinalittledishy says: Jul 16, 2014 2:07 PM

    Even if Belichick thought Hernandez was up to no good i wouldnt think murder was at the top of the list. When freinds, family or work colleges look a bit funny the last thing i think of is i wonder if they are about to execute somebody?

  46. 6ball says: Jul 16, 2014 2:09 PM

    .
    Belichick does not avoid interpersonal communication. He just chooses who to associate with. He shuns the media because most are looking for something negative to write.

    If someone asks him about two tight end formations, the zone blitz, or the changing role of the modern NFL safety, you can’t shut him up.
    .

  47. bassplucker says: Jul 16, 2014 2:11 PM

    I bet they do. But the most important thing right now is to protect the integrity of the prosecution’s case. As fascinating as those texts may be, it’s not worth opening the door for Hernandez to walk on a technicality.

  48. officialgame says: Jul 16, 2014 2:15 PM

    Surprised, they must have a lot in common.

  49. footballfan58 says: Jul 16, 2014 2:23 PM

    After reading the headline, all I had to do was look at who wrote this article and I started laughing! Always making Bill and the Patriots out to be the evil force of the world! LOL!!

  50. torqueolo says: Jul 16, 2014 2:34 PM

    I hope you can understand the difference between evidence for a murder trial and publicly available information. The league has no more right to inspect these text messages than any other between coach and player; just because someone already put them into a report does not make them public property, and you should be ashamed that you are apparently hoping that someone will breach confidentiality.

  51. tigerlilac says: Jul 16, 2014 2:36 PM

    The responses to this thread are reminiscent of Puritan Salem. Accusations of guilt by association and mass hysteria among a gullible group of like minded individuals that are easily led. Patriot haters can’t accept the fact that the Patriots win year in and year out because they work harder and play smarter. No, it must be the devil under the hoodie cheating.

  52. 1952vikefan says: Jul 16, 2014 2:41 PM

    as belechick puts it if your not cheating your not trying

  53. lovetbrady says: Jul 16, 2014 2:59 PM

    Ok people no one has seen anything, so can we dispense with the conspiracy theories? However if BB. Has nothing to hide than release the tapes.

  54. crownofthehelmet says: Jul 16, 2014 2:59 PM

    BB text: Hey Aaron, now that things have cooled down, why don’t you pay a visit to Matt Walsh.

  55. jnbnet says: Jul 16, 2014 3:00 PM

    1952vikefan says:
    Jul 16, 2014 2:41 PM
    as belechick puts it if your not cheating your not trying

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    He never said that. LT (the Charger’s LT) is the one who said that.

  56. pastabelly101 says: Jul 16, 2014 3:05 PM

    Gee, Florio grasping at straws over Belichick and Pats-I’m Shocked,Shocked!

  57. ydousuk says: Jul 16, 2014 3:05 PM

    I don’t think what he did was wrong. What the hell is wrong with texting a guy he was probably trying to help? Maybe if Hernandez had more father figures in his life he wouldn’t be sitting where he is right now. I’m sure the last thing on coach’s mind was that he was about to go murder someone. Most of this article is very speculative
    ———————————————————

    Um…if that is the case, then why try and withhold the information?

  58. pats1944 says: Jul 16, 2014 3:58 PM

    I watch training camp every year and bill and Aaron were on great terms and they would talk to each other. Just because Bill doesn’t talk to the media doesn’t mean he doesn’t talk to players. Hell he dressed up for randy moss’s party. Maybe they were friends that would text each other.

    Another problem I have is 33 pages isn’t a real measurement. My guess is that they have logged the towers and time of date each text was sent so let’s say it’s 100 texts a month which is 3 a day. But the replies from the other person would double that to 200 a month and 800 total. I figure they have 25 texts per page. That works out to 32 pages of text messages.

  59. marima07 says: Jul 16, 2014 4:31 PM

    Um…if that is the case, then why try and withhold the information?
    ——————————————
    Belichick did not try and withhold the information. He voluntarily turned over the text messages last summer at the same time he was interviewed by detectives – before being required or subpoenaed to do so.

    The only reason it is news now, is that court documents were just released on what evidence had been turned over already, and it’s the first time the public knows which documents the lawyers have in their possession.

  60. crush22 says: Jul 16, 2014 4:36 PM

    cpitch12 says:
    Jul 16, 2014 1:00 PM
    The more you hate …the better we are …….keep hating…just means we are that much better…….
    ______________________________
    What are you? 8?

  61. whatevnfl says: Jul 16, 2014 4:45 PM

    The NFL apparently prefers Belichick was advising Hernandez on covering up evidence rather than discussing football schemes in the offseason.

  62. bleedrangerblue says: Jul 16, 2014 5:28 PM

    Jet fan here. :)

  63. lanman11 says: Jul 16, 2014 6:03 PM

    The last time accusations like this were leveled at the Pats they torched the league. Here’s hoping they finish the job this time!

  64. marima07 says: Jul 16, 2014 6:56 PM

    If the league wants to look at Belichick’s text messages to Hernandez, the Patriots might suggest the league look at every head coach’s text messages to their players before hurling any stones.

  65. tedmurph says: Jul 16, 2014 7:55 PM

    Jet fan here.

    Jets fan reason to live: hoping the league stops the Pats, since nobody in the AFC East can.

  66. bricketh says: Jul 16, 2014 8:29 PM

    Would be funny if the text messages were released, and it is all Hernandez sending BB messages, with Bill only responding with “Ok” periodically… Would fit his personality perfectly.

  67. jchipwood says: Jul 16, 2014 9:42 PM

    Tedmurph if i recall last time the pats played the jets and phins they lost.

  68. castlelong1 says: Jul 17, 2014 7:18 AM

    How many pages are “OMG!, ROFL! LOL! :)

  69. irishfootball55 says: Jul 17, 2014 10:45 AM

    Lol lets really dig deep and call Urban to the grand jury and see what he just let slip on by. Aaron was out of control in Gainesville and neither the NCAA or “,Coach” Meyer did a damn thing about it. BB is not the problem Aaron is but he was a punk at Florida and allowed to get away with it start there.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!