Belichick opened the vault for McDaniels 10 years ago

Getty Images

Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels decided to remain with the team in part because head coach Bill Belichick plans to open the vault for his pupil.

“Bill Belichick said to him, ‘I want you to be by my side. I am going to open my world to you,’” said Mike Reiss of ESPN.com last week. “‘Show you how I view roster building, how I look at financials and the salary cap.’ To McDaniels, who is 41 years old, the chance to be with Belichick, arguably the greatest coach of all-time, 65 years old, to have that opportunity was viewed as to be extremely valuable to him.”

It sounded great, but here’s the thing. As a reader with an excellent memory has pointed out to PFT, Belichick opened the vault in 2008, before McDaniels took his first head-coaching job.

In a Sports Illustrated article written by Jim Trotter (now of ESPN), the then-33-year-old McDaniels explained the things Belichick did to prepare McDaniels to run a team of his own.

“When the coaches returned from a two-week break [after Super Bowl XLII], Belichick called McDaniels into his office and handed him a five-page, typed report on what it takes to be an effective coach and have a winning organization,” Trotter wrote.

“‘I had been talking to Bill for a few years about being a head coach, and after I didn’t do any interviews during the bye week in the ’07 playoffs he said, “I will help you in any way I can to get you ready for all the other things that go into the job,”‘” McDaniels told Trotter. “Just being around him every day was going to help me from a football standpoint because I could see what he did and how he did it. But he was saying he would help me with some of the things that you won’t really get a chance to witness or understand or become knowledgeable about until you’re in that position.”

McDaniels was blown away by the gesture from a decade ago.

“I remember when we first came back after our break, that very first day, that very first morning, he brought me into his office and he gave me five pages, typed, of all the topics and things that he felt like I needed to be educated about to become an effective head coach,” McDaniels said at the time. “I’m thinking to myself, here he’s got 10 or 12 days where he can do whatever in the hell he wants to do — we’ve just come off a season where we were 16-0 and lost in the Super Bowl — and the very first day back he gives me this? That was kind of like my bible.”

The two men spent time during the 2008 season discussing the various aspects of the five-page document, with McDaniels eventually crafting 60-to-65 questions that he would pose to teams that were supposed to be interviewing him. So how did he come up with those questions?

“When you say where did the questions come from, it was Bill’s background,” McDaniels said. “He had been a head coach in Cleveland and New England, he was a coordinator in a number of different places, and he understands the salary cap, free agency, the draft, contracts, all that stuff. He gave me as much of that information as I could possibly ask for — and then he gave me a whole bunch of information that I never would have asked for. I wouldn’t trade that experience for anything.”

So either he traded the chance to coach the Colts in order experience that again, or this notion of “opening the vault” had nothing to do with McDaniels’ case of cold feet.

[Editor’s note: As to anyone out there who wants to get a copy of Madden 18 for the PS4 in an effort to extend football season, the first one to redeem gets the freebie. A29G-24NF-FDED.]

27 responses to “Belichick opened the vault for McDaniels 10 years ago

  1. I still cannot believe this team let Jimmy G get out of their grasp. He was their future. Even the Packers had to cut the cord with Brett Favre / Aaron Rodgers. So now NE gets a couple of tail end years with Brady rather than 15 years with jimmy G. Pats REALLY botched that no matter how much you love Brady. You always have to look to the future of the franchise. Unless – Kraft is done when Brady is done??

  2. This whole thing is very overrated. How NE transitions is their business. It doesn’t needed to be analyzed like this everyday.

    Seek help, media.

    Seek help, jealous, annoying haters, also with a form of mental illness called Patsnoia.

    The biggest news is keeping Flores as DC and also making it seem like Caserio is a lock to succeed BB as GM which is the true coup.

    Now go find the next JimmyG project, and let’s rock and roll.

  3. I may not be that smart, but I’m pretty sure Bill Belichick has more than just “5 pages” worth of football head coaching knowledge to pass down to McDaniels.

  4. cabosan1978 says:
    February 12, 2018 at 1:03 pm

    I still cannot believe this team let Jimmy G get out of their grasp. He was their future. Even the Packers had to cut the cord with Brett Favre / Aaron Rodgers. So now NE gets a couple of tail end years with Brady rather than 15 years with jimmy G. Pats REALLY botched that no matter how much you love Brady. You always have to look to the future of the franchise. Unless – Kraft is done when Brady is done??
    ————————–
    How exactly would they have kept Jimmy G?

  5. This is all window dressing. Open the vault. Puhlease.
    When you have a job – any job – you learn from your boss. If he’s good you take notes. If he’s bad you take notes.
    You take what you learn and put your own spin on things and when you get the chance you either sink or swim.

    That’s called life.

    McDaniels is just a spineless weasel who can’t be taken at his word and Karma will come back at him.

  6. There is only 1 BB and 1 TB they don’t come on a 5 page typed memo or a 65 sheet of questions….. Be yourself and see if your good enough if you have the nuts….

  7. What wisdom did Belichick impart?

    Rule #1: Find a HOF QB who will work for less-than market value so it doesn’t put your salary cap in a stranglehold.

    Rule #2: See Rule #1.

  8. The Kraft family playing smart. They made Belichick trade Jimmy G. Then when Belichick starts getting mad like Parcells did, they get the coordinator/heir apparent to renig on his job offer for a wink/nod offer to be the next head coach IF he can find and develop a new Jimmy G. Do not be surprised when the Pats spend a high pick on QB in this draft. Also I think we may see Belichick gone before Brady at this point. The Krafts might have their QB / Head Coach succession plan in place.

  9. Given that the Two Bills show came out, and Belichick told the story about Parcels doing that for BB with the Giants, when saw the story about this last week it sounded to me as this McDaniels thing was just pulled from that.

  10. cabosan1978 says:
    February 12, 2018 at 1:03 pm
    I still cannot believe this team let Jimmy G get out of their grasp. He was their future. Even the Packers had to cut the cord with Brett Favre / Aaron Rodgers. So now NE gets a couple of tail end years with Brady rather than 15 years with jimmy G. Pats REALLY botched that no matter how much you love Brady. You always have to look to the future of the franchise. Unless – Kraft is done when Brady is done??

    0 0 Rate This

    —————-

    1. Talk to Brady and his avacado ice cream.

    2. A 2nd rd pick is better than a 3rd.

    3. BB saved 3-4 mil per instead of paying for a back up.

    4. Way too many NFC teams were not even bidding. Skins, Giants, Bears, Caridnals, etc.

    Why weren’t those teams banging down the door for Caserio/McDaniels/Jimmy?

  11. stampnhawk says:
    February 12, 2018 at 1:32 pm
    Given that the Two Bills show came out, and Belichick told the story about Parcels doing that for BB with the Giants, when saw the story about this last week it sounded to me as this McDaniels thing was just pulled from that.

    0 0 Rate This

    ——————-

    There is no question that BB’s experience in CLeveland with the awful Modell, gave BB bad vibes with Leon Hess/Woody Johnson in 2000. No question.

    It’s why McDaniels even interviewing with Indy was bizarre. They’re cheaters and losers.

  12. rob471773 says:

    How exactly would they have kept Jimmy G?
    _________________________________________

    You have to trade Brady as the Packers did with Favre. As the 49er’s did with Montana. And so on and so on. That is just what you have to do. The 2 years they get out of Brady are far outweighed by the career they would have had with Jimmy G. Its not even debatable. Horrible decision for the teams long term future.

  13. Bill better find the vault that has the notebook to build a defense and how not to make insanely stupid coaching mistakes during a Superbowl.

    Bill hasn’t put together a “great” defense since 2005/2006. the path to the last 4 Superbowls has been entirely on Brady throwing the team on his back and dragging them almost in spite of some of Bill’s recent coaching calls.

  14. The job of Patriot head coach may seem better than the Colts now but when McDaniels gets it, there will be no Belichick (obviously), likely no Brady as the QB and likely no Bob Kraft as the owner. The three consistent people who made the Patriots winners will be gone and all that will be left is a fanbase with incredibly high expectations and new head coach having second thoughts yet again.

  15. cabosan1978 says:
    February 12, 2018 at 1:51 pm
    rob471773 says:

    How exactly would they have kept Jimmy G?
    _________________________________________

    You have to trade Brady as the Packers did with Favre. As the 49er’s did with Montana. And so on and so on. That is just what you have to do. The 2 years they get out of Brady are far outweighed by the career they would have had with Jimmy G. Its not even debatable. Horrible decision for the teams long term future.

    ———————————————

    Jumping the gun on the 15 year career of Jimmy G aren’t you?

    People were talking about Luck, Kapernick, and many many other “great qbs” in the making a few years ago. In 10 years if Jimmy G has a few SB rings and is as you say, then it’s fair to criticize not moving Brady. Until then the jury is out….

  16. For McDaniels’ sake, I hope he’s the Patriots’ coach-in-waiting. Just sayin’ because after the stunt he pulled with the Colts, it may be a while before he’s even considered for another head coaching job outside of New England.

  17. To me it means McDaniels is going to start taking on more and BB will be more defensively focused.

    Whether they say it or not, McDaniels is now being groomed to replace BB within 3 years. I think it’s looking more like Tom and Bill will go out together.

  18. No matter how the soap opera in Patsville continues Daniels showed his character , he left coaches high and dry and his words means little.

  19. Anyone who thinks McDaniels is the offensive coordinator at New England is dreaming. The true OC is Tom Brady. Let him cross Brady and see how fast he becomes waterboy. Same was true for Peyton, Rodgers, Romo and a host of others. HOF qb’s are their own offensive coordinators. Leave them the hell alone because they know more about how the game is progressing than the guy on the sidelines (or in the booth).

  20. What’s in that vault? A bunch of camcorders, rigged air pressure gauges, bugging devices, and radio interference equipment.

Leave a Reply

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