Emotional Belichick says goodbye to Bruschi

Patriots coach Bill Belichick showed the public a rare side of himself Monday morning while saying goodbye to long-time Patriots linebacker Tedy Bruschi.

Choked up and with his voice cracking with emotion on every word, Belichick made it clear he holds Bruschi in special regard.

“I’ve had the privilege of coaching a lot of great players and great leaders in Natl Football League and . . . I’ll . . . . I’ll just put Tedy up there with all of them and above all of them.”

Belichick lauded Bruschi’s work ethic and said more than once that “he always did the right thing.”

Bruschi was his usual upbeat, energetic self throughout his comments and seconded the mind meld he had with his coach. 

“I’m in that team meeting sometimes and I hear [Belichick] speak,” Bruschi said. “And I swear it’s the same thing I would say.”

If you are not appreciative of Bruschi, the Patriots, or this post in general, we suggest you moving on to the next post before moving forward.

At the end of his talk, Belichick gave Bruschi the highest compliment possible.

“If you ask me to sum it up – how I feel about Tedy Bruschi in five seconds,” Belichick said.  “He’s the perfect player.  He’s the perfect player.”

Bruschi was later asked about the comment, “That’s something you’ll never hear during your career,” he said before laughing.  “That’s probably the best compliment you could give me.”

91 responses to “Emotional Belichick says goodbye to Bruschi

  1. So many Packer fans felt this way about Favre after he retired the FIRST time…. such a shame he had to ‘f’ it all up.

  2. In many ways, it’s the end of an era, though I expect he will be a part of the Patriots organization as either a coach or some other capacity for years to come.
    Nothing else to say but 54 is the man.

  3. Perfect retirement conference, on both of their parts. Well done. Belichick helped turn Bruschi into the player he became, and Bruschi helped Belichick become the champion that he is.

  4. Does this mean Belichick will list Bruschi as “questionable” on the injury report all season?

  5. The irony of the SpyGate mastermind and the wrecker of multiple families and marriages lauding anyone for “always doing the right thing.”
    HTF would Belicheat ever know the right thing?

  6. Bruschi made it hard to hate the Patriots, and I hated him for that! 🙂 Seriously, he is a class guy and a warrior, a player’s player. If you wanted to show young players how a true pro carried himself, you needed to look no further than Tedy Bruschi. They don’t make too many like that guy.

  7. Now Teddy can move on to solving the last digit of Pi, or maybe negotiate intergalactic peace between the Federation and the Romulans? Maybe even cure cancer or end world hunger.

  8. It really is sad days, a lot of those players who cheated their way to 3 Super Bowls with Cameras, HGH, wiretapping defensive players and Balco are dropping like flies.
    We;ll all remember the good old days. Good bye Teddy, enjoy those stained rings***

  9. Tedy Bruschi is the ultimate player. Tough, physical, intelligent, unquenchable work ethic, coachable and had the intangibles that helped the Patriots franchise win 3 Superbowls… loyal, always improving and playing with heart.
    I have many fond memories of Tedy, including the unforgettable interception against the Dolphins after the blizzard. The snow “fireworks” is an image that I will never forget.
    Thank you for all the great memories Tedy, New England will never forget you.

  10. I’m a Steelers period! Hate the Patriots. I think Bill Belichick sold his soul to the devil to win their Superbowls but I have a lot of respect for Tedy Bruschi. I love the way he played the game.

  11. There is no doubt that Bruschi was Belichick’s defensive Brady and another coach on the field. #54 may not have had the talent or production to get him to the HOF. But he was clearly as valuable to his team’s success as many of those who are already there.

  12. I’m a Colts fan, so I have a strong disliking for the Patriots… especially for Tedy Bruschi.
    But one thing I do, is appreciate greatness when you see it.
    All 3 Patriot Superbowl teams had players on it that I couldnt stand, but I have the most respect for all of them (Including Rodney Harrison).
    Bruschi definitely was the best guy on that team. He was everything that a coach would want in a player.
    Ask Bill Parcells, ask Pete Carrol, Ask Bill Belicheck. They all saw what Tedy was about. The game will miss him.
    HOF’er? In statistics alone, no. But in heart, character, leadership, drive, determination, player, friend, collegue… he deserves it.
    Plus he has an awesome last name…LOL!

  13. Bruschi is already vintage. Great name, great player, great teams; nothing left to prove…

  14. Did Coach say anything when Ted Johnson retired? Johnson left it all in the field, yet his exit seems to have a less lauded ending.

  15. Belicheck was really crying because now he has a new person to work the camera that nobody will expect.

  16. AnnoyingKnowItAll:
    I was thinking about that as well. Although I’d love to think so, he’s probably not going to be a HOF’r. Ah well, I’ll miss ya B-b-b-b-Bruschi!

  17. “At the end of his talk, Belichick gave Bruschi the highest complement possible. ”
    You should probably re-type that.

  18. Matt Wash, I would literally bet one thousand dollars that if you actually met him face to face you wouldn’t talk like you do online.

  19. If Belichick gets “choked up” when Bruschi retires he will be blubbering like a crackhead whose pipe has been taken away when Brady retires and Belichick goes from being a “genius” head coach back to the below average one he is when Brady is not his starter.

  20. Some of you are really terrible people. Ugh. Re-evaluate your lives, seriously. For all of you who hate Belichick, Bruschi is the exactly the opposite. Great guy, did a ton of community work, wonderful father, great teammate. Exactly the kind of person you would want your kids to look up to. But apparently those qualities are not what some of you look for. I feel sorry for your kids.

  21. Anyone who doesn’t respect Tedy Bruschi knows absolutely nothing about football
    Thanks for the memories and the Super Bowl victories you are a true champion

  22. I’ll never forget seeing him as a rookie in pre season games…small looking linebacker but for some reason at the time you knew he was a gamer. Never thought he would be as effective as he was, but you just knew there was something there. He was always high energy, 110% effort guy.
    He’ll be missed in that lockerroom. And to AnnoyingKnowItAll and other of the like, it’s nice to see the objectivity from rival teams’ fans like this. You can discern who the mature fans are from the basement dwelling dweebs.
    I hate Manning but huge respect for the guy named Forehead. Bob Sanders, if I had to pick one, would be my favorite Colt’s player. It’s just a shame he gets hurt so often, but the guy is just like Bruschi when it comes to effort, energy and his affect on the field.

  23. I’ll never forget seeing the pictures of Teddy playing with his kids on the field before the Superbowl in Jacksonville. Not many LBs like Teddy.


  25. Farewell Teddy. Good luck in your post-football life.
    Looking forward to seeing your bust in the Canton someday.

  26. Wow, so many lame ass hater comments for a guy that exemplified hard work and proved that working your ass off and hustling pays off. Anyone that is a true football fan will recognize that regardless of which team you support.

  27. “Belichick goes from being a “genius” head coach back to the below average one he is when Brady is not his starter.”
    Really? Did you not watch football last year? Belichick didn’t have Brady, and came off looking more like a genius than ever, winning 11 games with a nobody at QB.
    It must suck being so bitter, you have my sympathy.

  28. Mike Florio: “If you are not appreciative of Bruschi, the Patriots, or this post in general, we suggest you moving on…”
    It’s good to see how much respect you get Florio. You specifically ask people not to post their typical “Belicheat, camera, cheating” routine and yet again, they disregard your respectful request. D- to the person in charge of editing posts before they go up.
    Bruschi played the game the way it was meant to be played. The Pat haters *should* have enough respect for the man to hold their personal vendettas against the Patriots until another Patriot post. Then again, look at what “classy” individuals we’re working with here.

  29. I find it hilarious that the haters who accuse the Patriots of having no class are stooping to new lows while one of the classiest guys in sports heads off into the sunset with his legacy and dignity intact.
    What a bunch of tools.

  30. Good Luck Teddy.
    Players with your class, who have earned their respect the old-fashioned way will -always- be missed.
    – A Steelers fan.

  31. “I did have some respect for that team, but after what they pulled on that last drive, it’s totally lost now” Bruschi said. “You’re getting beat….just accept it with class. I know we would have if the tables were turned. But they’re out there calling timeouts, trying to get extra yards, padding their stats” –Tedy Bruschi
    This Bruschi quote was pre-2007. Strange, after the Pats started doing that, he didn’t mind as much.-rolleyes-

  32. Any true fan and student of the game can appreciate Tedy Bruschi and what he brought to the game regardless of what team you call your own.
    All of you who use this as a forum to launch hatred of the Pats and BB, please grow up on this particular posting. It’s old, lame and juvenile.
    Appreciate the man for how he carried himself on and and off the field, and being a true throwback to the LB’s of old. For a person who has kids, I can honestly say Tedy is a guy you would want them to emulate. We should all appreciate that he played the game the way it should be played, and left himself on the field every practice and game.

  33. There are alot of classy comments here for a truely classy football player but there are alot of BITTER and JEALOUS fans from other cities posting their crap.
    Grow up and acknowledge a class act and helluva player who played for a GREAT TEAM.
    Good luck Teddy!!!!

  34. @SteelTown6:
    Yup. Finally, something a Steeler fan and this diehard Cowboy fan can agree on.
    Bruschi was a gamer, and a class act. We need a lot more like him in the NFL.
    Good luck in the next phase of your life, Teddy.

  35. AmishGangsta says:
    August 31, 2009 1:05 PM
    “I did have some respect for that team, but after what they pulled on that last drive, it’s totally lost now” Bruschi said. “You’re getting beat….just accept it with class. I know we would have if the tables were turned. But they’re out there calling timeouts, trying to get extra yards, padding their stats” –Tedy Bruschi
    This Bruschi quote was pre-2007. Strange, after the Pats started doing that, he didn’t mind as much.-rolleyes-
    Bruschi doesn’t call plays on offense…are you sure he approved of the other teams lack of defense?

  36. I don’t like the Pats at all. I don’t like anything about the Pats. But I can definitely appreciate all that Bruschi has done both on and off the field. He seems like he’s a good guy and for the most part classy. I hope he continues to have good health as he continues life. He was a great LB.

  37. It is very nice to see fans of other teams showing some respect. Thank you. Tedy was a class act and a great leader on our team. He will be missed.
    As for all the nasty comments…anyone ever notice that most Pats fans hardly ever say nasty things about other teams/players? Talk about who has the class…

  38. I don’t like the Patriots, especially Brady and Belichick. Too arrogant for my taste.
    However, I really like Tedy Bruschi and the intensity and athleticism he brought to his position.
    I would have loved to have him on my team.
    Good luck on your next endeavor Tedy, the NFL will miss you.

  39. I am not a pats fan. I love the ravens but I have the utmost respect for ted. If all players played and acted like him we would be a better world. All the haters out their need to take a lesson from him on how to be a man.

  40. I have to say this is pure BS Teddy is the best this guy had a stroke and came back a year latter to play and play well
    If most of you had that happen you would be sitting in a room with spit running down your face
    Teddy is not TO or Vick or any of the other aholes that play today he is a class act
    Good Luck to you in the future your an insperation to anyone with a brain in there head

  41. Guys! Guys! Guys! I can say I hate the Patriots(Go Steelers) and still be a true football fan. Tedy Brushci was not a overly talented player but he came to work. He’s was the toughest SOB on that defense! I also respect the fact that he know’s it’s time to call it quit’s not like that guy in Minnesota. I remember that footage of him playing with his kids before a Super Bowl. What a awesome site. I think Tedy Brushci is a Hall of Famer. But I still hate the Patriots!

  42. It never ceases to amaze at some of the haters on this site. I cannot stand the Pats but as football fans, everyone should appreciate what Bruschi and Belichick have done. The Pats have been a modern day dynasty. In today’s era, that is saying alot. Just give credit where credit is due and stop hating on other’s achievements.

  43. I know of no one in the NFL that has ever complained about Bru. No one ever said he is dirty, or cheats, or takes cheap shots. The haters will say what they will about the Patriots. It is natural to hate the dominant team, just like I hated the Cowboys way back when. However to say anything hateful about Bru on this day just shows your ignorance of football. I don’t mean the “going on to stop world hunger” statements. That is actually old, and pretty funny stuff that went around in some teams forums poking fun at the Patriots “superman.” Kind of like the chuck Norris jokes. I mean the disrespectful stuff. Idiots every one of you.
    Bruschi was a class act. He was a great player (maybe not HoF material, but clutch). He came back from a stroke to once again play at the pro level. He is the very definition of a great man, and what a professional football player SHOULD be. There are very few like him in the NFL, or any sport. The man took pay cuts to help his team, and routinely gave a home team discount in negotiations, because he wanted to be a Patriot, and he wanted to win. He will always be the definition of football class.
    We will miss you Bru. It is a different team now.

  44. In a stats driven sports world, Bruschi was a non-stats guy that still stood out. He was the face of one of the best teams of the decade.
    HOF for sure in my opinion. And I really dislike the Pats.

  45. Players like Bruschi and Troy Brown don’t come around too often. They give everything they have, do whatever it takes to help the team, don’t gripe about money, don’t turn into drama queens, don’t call a lot of attention to themselves, and take every loss extremely personally. Guys like that are what the NFL needs more of, instead of these simpering twits who hold out of rookie training camp because they’re only getting $50M instead of $51M.
    I’d love to see one of the Pats haters have stroke, get the hole in your heart sewn back up, teach yourself to walk again, and then go out and play professional sports like nothing ever happened. All within about a year.

  46. # I♥Patriots says: August 31, 2009 2:04 PM:
    “As for all the nasty comments…anyone ever notice that most Pats fans hardly ever say nasty things about other teams/players? Talk about who has the class…”
    Really? I don’t know about that. I have seen a lot of hateful things said about LT and other players by some Patriot fans. Respect is a two way street. That is something that ought to be remembered by some of the Patriot fans who are upset about the comments here now. Lets see how they react to players who eventually retire from other teams.
    Gregg Rosenthal :”
    If you are not appreciative of Bruschi, the Patriots, or this post in general, we suggest you moving on to the next post before moving forward.”
    What is this all about. All of a sudden people can’t post negative opinions anymore? Sure, some are tasteless and classless, but since when has that been an issue when it comes to posting?
    Here is a thought, if you don’t want negative comments being posted, then how about shutting the comment feature off all together. Other message boards do it. It is far better to shut off all comments then to start censoring them.

  47. Sad day for a Patriots fan.
    I appreciate those of you who follow other teams, but stopped here to say a kind word.
    The others, well, you’re just little people.

  48. Among white MLBs who wear/wore #54, Bruschi’s always been my 2nd favorite (edging out Zach Thomas).
    He represents what’s still good about the league.

  49. I remember a couple years back while taking a road trip out to PA with my crew…we’re NE fans. I wore my Patriots jersey while out and about in Pittsburgh. We decided to watch the Pirates play (more to drink beer and hang out) and I got to chatting with a few fellas from the area…true residents…union steel-worker type guys.
    We were talking football and both of them remarked how bad they felt for Bruschi as he had just had his stroke. They indicated they hated the Pats (for beating the Steeler’s ass when it counted in the early 2000s…) but really enjoyed watching Tedy Bruschi play the game of football. According to one of them…”Tedy did it the right way”….
    I still remember that comment like yesterday and its fitting to share it here. It’s definitely good for him to be able to walk away from the game with his brains and body intact…plus he was a shell of his former self on the field. Glad he got to go out with his head up!

  50. @AmishGangsta.
    That quote was after the beat down the Pats gave the Steelers and there was less then a couple of minutes left in the game. The Steelers were down, what three or four scores? Then they were calling timeouts, etc.
    Bruschi was not complaining that the Pats were being run up on, he was complaining on how the Steelers couldn’t just accept they got their rears handed to them. Get it right at least.

  51. “….I♥Patriots says: August 31, 2009 2:04 PM
    As for all the nasty comments…anyone ever notice that most Pats fans hardly ever say nasty things about other teams/players? …”
    welcome ..first visit to our planet?

  52. LOL at all the jealous folks here. Hey, guys, your green is showing!!
    Tedy Bruschi was an extraordinary football player and a class act. He has lost a step in recent years, but I still hate to see him go!
    Thanks for the memories-and the rings! Good luck, Tedy!

  53. Footballnut-I know where that comment came from-I was just commenting on how he didn’t mind when his own team did it excessively in the 07 season.
    And, as a matter of fact, its MUCH worse when the WINNING team is doing it than when the losing team is just trying to catch up until the clock runs out. I didn’t understand why he would say that in the first place, of COURSE a team thats getting beat badly is going to keep playing hard. It was a stupid comment all the way around. Its kind of like Welker’s outburst at the fans in Indy in 07-after that, I lost a lot of respect for him.

  54. “If you are not appreciative of Bruschi, the Patriots, or this post in general, we suggest you moving on to the next post before moving forward.”
    WTF? If you are not able to handle people with viewpoints that differ from your own, I suggest you find a new line of work. I guess this is why there isn’t a comments section for rotoworld entries. Most adults can handle people disagreeing with him. I guess ol’ Gregg can’t.
    What a joke.

  55. Its not just a sad day for Pats fans, but a sad day for football in general.
    Being a Chargers fan all my life, I have grown to have a strong distaste for the Pats. Not their players but just with the little rivalry their was with both teams.
    I will say though, that I have followed #54 from his days at Arizona, and he has been nothing but class. Sure he is not your every day size LB and yes his stats don’t measure up to those in the league, but if I had the choice of any sports athlete in ANY league for my daughter to look at as a role model, hands down, it would be this man.
    To all those with negative comments about Teddy, why not keep your posts to yourself. Would you rather have your kid look at Chad Johnson, or T.O. as their heroes, or someone who didnt play the game for the money, but for the love of the game. Someone who valued family first.
    Teddy, even though the Pats have always given the Chargers a LOT of grief and I do mean a lot, you deserve to be in the Hall of Fame and you are the true example of a competitor. You will be missed.

  56. Some of you are insane, you act like Tedy Bruschi donated a portion of salary to you personally while you were having money problems. As someone pointed out before, he’s not that classy, his comments on the Steelers not losing with “class” when he didn’t care his team was doing the same thing, he’s a moron.
    Also, i would think Duce Staley’s opinion would differ a little bit, being Bruschi (allegedly) kicked and injured him under a pile intentionally.
    I did like the way he played the game, great hard-working LB don’t get me wrong and his coming back from a stroke was truly a great courageous story, but some of you talk about Bruschi was if he’s destined for sainthood. I don’t know why Goodell is even letting the league continue functioning since Lord Bruschi is done, give me a break.

  57. End of an era. They should have drafted Conner Barwin to take his place. They are cut from the same mold. He might get lost in Houston. First big mistake they have made that high in the draft for a while.

  58. Some thought that they heard the sound of a champagne cork being popped but it was just Teddy removing his finger from Belichick’s pooper one last time.

  59. Mostly Steelers fans and Pats fans posting on this. I suppose us Jets fans are few and far between. Here are my thoughts:
    Belichick will never get my respect. Besides the fact that he cheated against my team, he showed a complete lack of character and respect for our former coach, Eric Mangini. Mangini was hardly the coach we hoped he would be, but he shook things up, he gave us hope by sneaking us into the playoffs and he never made any excuses.
    At the same time, I don’t blame any of the Patriots players for Belichick’s misgivings. As far as I’m concerned, the buck stops with him. Tedy Bruschi was a fearsome defender, not because of his size but because of his hands and his ability to think on his feet. In his prime, he was an elite linebacker in the company of guys like Ray Lewis.
    I dislike Patriots fans. Because they’re typically also Red Sox and Celtics fans and they tend to be very arrogant. They feel their team deserves success and respect because of how bad they used to be. Wake me up the next time your team goes 40 years without making it to the superbowl.

  60. “First big mistake they have made that high in the draft for a while.”
    I would like to be able to agree with you on this point, but unfortunately, the name Chad Jackson comes immediately to mind.

  61. There are a very few select players who transcend the game and become respected or known as “Class Acts”…..Johnny Unitas, Walter Payton, Pat Tillman, etc.
    While I despise the Cheatriots and their over regarded, hyped up coach, Bruschi always seemed like he belonged in a group of very classy players an although he might not be in the same group as those mentioned above, he was close.
    Fav-ruh use to be on this trajectory but he imploded and know will be known as an Ass Hat vs. a Class Act.

  62. …can we please have and IGNORE button already … too many goober a$$ haters around here ruining it for everyone …
    … FYI … for the ones that do not know the term goober (aka gamesday and his kind) goober is synonym for … ehhh how about looking it up by your damn selves

  63. Seems like he always did the right thing. Even knew when to leave.
    A lot of guys don’t know when to pack it in.

  64. @ Evan:
    Please be advised that, as a New Yorker, arrogance is indigneous to your species.
    In addition, please poll the NFL coaching fraternity and ask what member of their ranks is the least deserving of their respect. My money would be on that porky little Quisling now residing in Cleveland.
    @ luckyram:
    Your employ of the tired “Cheatriots” above suggests there’s no way you’re old enough to have ever seen John Unitas play – unless, of course, you’re just remarkably immature for your age. Don’t invoke the names of those you know nothing about – it just hurts whatever modicum of credibility you may carry with your audience.
    Yours in perpetual arrogance,
    A Patriots Fan

  65. Thanks, Tedy. Enjoy your time with Heidi and the boys, and we all hope the team finds a place for you behind the scenes. It’s always valuable to have a leader like you in–or around–the locker room.

  66. As a Steelers fan, born and bred (perhaps one of the few who has never hated the Pats?), hafta agree with the others – gotta root for a dude with the kind of work ethic that Bruschi has. Also, it’s good to see a guy who knows when it’s time to step down.

  67. Whaaaaaa! Whaaaaaaaaaa! People don’t like the Patriots! Whaaaaaaaa! He was a football player, and dumb one at that. Anyone that would keep playing after they HAD A FREAKING STROKE is retarded at best and selfish and negligent at worst. I wonder how those wife kids that always ran out to greet him would have felt if he had had another stroke that killed him from football. He was an assclown.

  68. “…# Free_SeanTaylor says: August 31, 2009 9:05 PM
    He was an assclown….”
    [ /holding up a mirror ]

  69. Hey Free …
    Sean Taylor was a drunk and a thug. He put his girlfriend and kid in the midst of A FREAKING HAIL OF BULLETS.
    I don’t know what an assclown is, but I suspect your friends have called you one more than once.

  70. Dewey Axewound says:
    August 31, 2009 3:09 PM
    Among white MLBs who wear/wore #54, Bruschi’s always been my 2nd favorite (edging out Zach Thomas).
    He represents what’s still good about the league.
    WHITE MLBs???
    What do YOU represent, Dummy Asshole? The KKK?
    What a loser you are for even differentiating.

  71. @May 10, 1970
    Actually, the police report said that the people that broke into Sean Taylor’s house had no previous interaction with him. Bruschi made an active decision to put his life in danger regardless of the consequences of his actions to his family.
    Sweet rebuttal. Ad Hominem points don’t really make an argument, though.

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