Belichick would trade almost anyone

When the New England Patriots sent defensive lineman Richard Seymour to the Oakland Raiders in exchange for Oakland’s 2011 first-round draft pick, it was a move that prompted a great deal of discussion around the league.

But Patriots coach Bill Belichick says in a wide-ranging interview with Jason Cole of Yahoo Sports that it was actually quite simple: The Patriots just view every potential move as a cost-benefit analysis, and in the case of that trade, the benefit of a 2011 first-round pick is greater than the cost of Richard Seymour.

We gave up a significant player and we gained a significant asset,” Belichick told Cole. “There’s a balance of this year and years in the future. Do we consider that? Yes, but in the end you look at the level of compensation and you do it. Had it been for another level of compensation, would we do it? Maybe not. I don’t know. There’s a point where you say yes and a point where you say no and there’s a real fine line in the middle where it really depends on how bad you want to make the trade. It’s like anything else, if you really want to do it, you might take less. If you don’t, it probably would take more.”

Belichick said it was the Raiders who brought up the possibility of acquiring Seymour, and that it took 24 to 48 hours of discussions to get the deal done.

Belichick also said that “probably everybody is available at the right price,” but when Cole pressed him about whether he’d really trade Tom Brady, Belichick acknowledged that he’s building a team around a certain core group of players — and he wouldn’t trade those guys. As an example of a player he wouldn’t trade, Belichick named linebacker Jerod Mayo, last year’s first-round draft pick.

“Now, is Jerod Mayo available? No, not really,” Belichick said. “But there are certain players who are young that have a certain number of years left on their contract that you want on your team, so you’re really not going to trade them. Those guys are realistically not available, no. But is everybody else available for a certain price on every team? I would say, for the most part, they probably are. Who’s willing to give that? What you want and what someone else is willing to give, that’s usually very different. In this case, it worked.”

In reality, we won’t know if it worked for years, until we’ve seen how Seymour’s tenure in Oakland plays out, and until we’ve seen what the Patriots do with the Raiders’ pick. But for now, Belichick seems confident that his cost-benefit analysis was correct. Given his track record, he’s probably right.

46 responses to “Belichick would trade almost anyone

  1. Hmm.
    I personally prefer Eric Mangini’s model…..”Trade for whoever is willing to paint my house.”

  2. The Patriots success and Belichick’s coaching genius begins and ends with Tom Brady. So yes, everybody should be available except Brady and that includes Belichick.

  3. Bill
    Please pick up the phone & call Ted Thompson immediately. Explain this concept to him.
    Thank you
    A Green Bay fan

  4. Belichick is right. It may seem cold and heartless, but football is not about warm feelings, it is about winning. Most people on this website hate belichick, but it is sad they cannot appreciate his true greatness. You are living during the Belichick Era of football. You should get over your hatred and enjoy his genius on the football field

  5. If you consider Seymour was most likely gone at the end of the year in some respects if the player they get is a half decent journeymen who sticks around New England and plays the role he is required to play for several years then it was a good trade. If the player ends up being a bust who never sees significant playing time then it was a bad trade. When evaluating the trade as it relates to Seymour all you have to consider is this year anything past that was most likely going to be away from New England. The only way you consider those future years is if Wilfork, heaven forbid, gets injured and his career ends because realistically it was going to come down to Wilfork or Seymour and in this case New England chose Wilfork.

  6. I was a huge Richard Seymour fan BUT in all reality he was gone after this year. The Patriots generally know the value of a player, they would not have resigned Seymour.Getting a number #1 from the Raiders, guaranteed to be a high pick, injuries and age, hello Bob Sanders-Colts seems smart business.
    And not to be a homer, They do make mistakes,Mesante Samuels. But quite often they are correct , Deion Branch, Lawyer Milloy etc.
    Call Belichick whatever you want BUT IN BILL WE TRUST!!
    The Patriots will stay a top team for another ten years !!
    Here come the comments,let the stupidity flow

  7. Anyone’s available in the right situation
    Let’s say they use the Raiders 1st Round pick – possibly #1 overall most would agree – in 2011 when there may well be a cap keeping Rookie Salaries down, and draft a slam dunk franchise QB of the future…
    Said QB could sit on the bench for 2 full years getting aclimated etc…
    In 2013, when Brady is 36 – an age when even the best Hall of Fame quarterbacks have seen their skills eroding – who knows the Patriots might consider trading him for a #1 pick and them some
    It’d have to be the right circumstance – but one can’t rule anything out. Such a trade could put them in a great position just as the Seymour trade put them in a great position to make that move as well.

  8. The key word “almost”. There are players he will not trade. He knows who is a locker room leader and who is not. Seymour is a great player represented by a nit-wit agent who was going to want Albert Haynesworth money. As for the QB mentioned, Brady will play for that team as long as it is a mutually equitible deal. That is the way Belichick operates.
    Okay ladies, let’s hear the bullshit.

  9. It works for them, they just stock pile on draft picks and any talent they lose to trades, they make up 20 fold.

  10. Some interesting things at the end of that column in regards to Belichick and Jimmy Johnson’s comments about how you can count on twenty or so teams every year to make enough wrong decisions that they’ll be bad, leaving only about ten teams that you have to compete with.
    Perhaps it is (or should be) stating the obvious, but maybe every other GM and HC should read what he said about evaluating quarterbacks. Belichick talked about decision making, accuracy and consistency; nowhere did he talk about a quarterback’s height, weight, number of bench presses, time in the 40, or even his arm strength.
    Ironically the column’s title was a bit misleading since he barely talked about ‘trading anyone’, though that is understandable since that is what is going to generate readers and web hits. I thought the other stuff in the column was a lot more interesting.

  11. As an Eagles fan I will be the first to say the Pats do it right almost all the time. I wouldn’t question Belicheck on anything football related.

  12. I’d trade belicheat for some leftover Halloween candy…… be honest……now cue the i’d suck on his balls, he’s einstein, nostradamus had nothing on him pats bromance innuendo….in 3……2……….1…How dare you

  13. Theoretically any player is available for trade. Even Tom Brady. But realistically the asking price for a player like Brady would be so high that it would never actually happen because no team would be willing or able to part with the type of goods it would take.
    But later in Brady’s career, when he only has 3 years left or something, and given a situation where the Pats have a young stud to take over, you could see him moved. Look at what happened with Favre. Granted, that was a bit more complex of a situation with an organization that had already moved on and a player that didn’t seem to want to be there very badly.
    But still, Green Bay traded away Brett Favre. Anything is possible given the correct circumstance.

  14. The Raiders will have to tag Seymour to keep him after this year and pay him an obscene amount to keep him. Given that they will likely continue to be bottom feeders as long as Al Davis owns the team, the Pats will get a high pick and Oakland will either lose Seymour after one year or have to pay him so much that they come out the poorer either way.

  15. The only downside of trading for a Raider first round pick is knowing you’ll likely end up with a top 5 selection, and absent a rookie wage scale, that’s going to be an expensive pick. Belichick might have been better off asking for two second round picks.

  16. Did I just read that correctly? When pressed, BB said he wouldn’t trade Mayo, but evaded the question about Brady? Dude’s harsh!
    Whatever! Go Pats, cuz you never know what tomorrow will bring.

  17. If Belichick says the same thing as every other GM or coach in the league, it’s news. Tell me one person related to sports that would dispute this. Most players are tradeable, some are realistically not, but everyone could get traded if the return value is greater. Is this a shock? If the Colts offered the Patriots Peyton Manning and the next twenty first-round picks, doesn’t Brady then also become a tradeable player? Basically, what Belichick is saying is that players like Brady and Mayo would need some pretty insane compensation. Players that have less value to the team will not cost as much to acquire. The Seymour trade already confirmed something that is “breaking news” months later.

  18. Everybody has a price, even Brady. If some team offered their next TEN first round picks for Brady, Belichick would have to at least consider it, if not jump at it.

  19. Belichick is very analytical in his decisions. He also eliminates all emotion and bias from the equation and ends up being very very good at what he does.

  20. I get what BB is saying, but what he DIDN’T mention is that the New England front office carefully assessed Oakland’s chances for this year and obviously concluded they’d be getting no worse than a top-ten pick in a what is considered to be a good draft.
    Just imagine what the Pats would’ve told the Indy front office if THEY’D been the ones trying to trade their first rounder for Seymour? All that crap BB just said about everyone having a “right price” would’ve gone straight out the window:
    “Yeah Bill, we want Seymour to line up opposite Dwight Freeney; see ya in the AFC title game!”
    Hell, Indy could’ve offered NE a first, second and fifth and still would’ve gotten the stinkpalm…

  21. I wonder how big of a genius Belichick will be after Brady retires. I believe he’s an incredible coach but that team flows through Brady’s golden shoulder. Cassel worked well for a year but he had an incredibly talented team around him and a smart coach to guide him through the gauntlet for a year. Brady did far more with far less for years prior.

  22. “Citizen Strange says:
    November 6, 2009 6:36 PM
    The Patriots success and Belichick’s coaching genius begins and ends with Tom Brady. So yes, everybody should be available except Brady and that includes Belichick. ”
    Here’s my feeling…..
    A lot of people credit Brady for Belichick’s success.
    A lot of people credit Belichick with Brady’s success.
    Doesn’t that mean they both rock balls? Because it CAN’T mean that they are both mediocre, even though all of those people are trying to prove that one or the other is mediocre.

  23. It’s smart. A coach should have his “core group” of players that he wont trade and everyone else should be on the block for the right price.

  24. The Albino Monkey (Ted Thompson) does not know how to do that.
    I still hate the Cheatriots.
    –(Had to have a generic insult)

  25. the seymour trade looks good on paper but on the field it has greatly weakend bot the run stuffing and pass rush ability of the Patriots defense. It may help in the future but it presently reduces their Super Bowl chances greatly.
    Maybe they’ll get a great player in return, but part of the cost of trading Seymour may be that they flushed this season down the toilet.
    The pats are still good enough to beat bad and mediocre teams, but a good offense will light up their defense. That will be their playoff undoing. Make sure you factor that into the Seymour trade while watching two non-patriot teams plaing in the Super Bowl.

  26. I’m not a fan at all of the Patriots, but I’m a Parcells fan through and through (brought NY 2 Superbowls). I will say that I love the way their organization is run, a la Parcells style. The Patriot’s management/coach has the football experience and intelligence to consistently turn their draft picks into players that succeed in their system. Trading a now 30-year old for a 1st round draft pick that is destined to be in the top 10 in 2011, is as safe a bet I’ve seen as any…given the Patriots overall draft results of the last decade. A Pro Bowl DE in the prime of his career is going to land a large sum of guaranteed money in free agency. Were they going to pay him upwards of $50 million in guaranteed money? Not at 30, no way. He has played 16 games once in his 8 years.
    I like seeing the honest, real quote from Belichick describing the thought process of trading players. That is exactly how a franchise should be run; objective decision-making that reinforces the concept of the team is greater than the individual. They have the Superbowls to back it up, so who can honestly say boo to that. (blah blah blah cheaters blah blah NFL biased blah blah blah)

  27. they certainly get credit for manipulating the roster and the draft with acquisition of picks for value….
    but look at their track record with all those picks in the last 5 yrs….there have been a lot of busts and horrible picks.
    2004 wilfork, watson
    2005 mankins, hobbs, kaczur, sanders, cassel
    2006 maroney, gastowski
    2007 merriweather
    2008 mayo, wheatley, wilhite, occonnel, crable
    05 was a decent draft but half those players are gone
    06 and 07 –terrible
    04 decent but remember both wilfork and watson were 1st rounders and of course marquise was promising before his death….
    you have to go back to 03 to point to a roster penetrating draft with warren, koppen, samuel, wilson, banta cain to really find their great draft

  28. a column from the daily mining gazette
    Seymour Buts
    n September 6, the Patriots traded Richard Seymour to the Raiders for a 2011 first-round draft choice and, in the six days of scrutiny that culminated with the defensive lineman reporting for duty in Northern California’s other seaside metro area (presumably after the lights went down in the city and the sun shone on the bay), the media machine chewed up Al Davis like Gaear Grimsrud (Peter Stormare) shoving Carl Showalter (Steve Buscemi) through the woodchipper in the movie Fargo.
    But he can’t do that! Can he?
    But the Patriots will never lose again!
    But that will surely be the top pick in the 2011 draft!
    But what about fairness, parity, and honest competition?
    But the commissioner will surely intervene and stop this madness.
    But, but, but (Marsha Marsha Marsha). Despite all of the buts, Seymour is now a Raider.
    By NFL standards this was a fairly significant trade and though it did receive a large amount of media coverage, the coverage was so one-sided that you’d have sworn that Davis must’ve publicly declared that he didn’t vote for Obama last November. From the minute the trade was announced the sports world disparaged Al Davis while simultaneously genuflecting at the altar of Bill Belichick. If you had the pleasure of viewing the pundits dissecting the pertinents of this trade you were left with the impression that the Raiders sent the Patriots a dozen (eleven just doesn’t work) front row seats to see U2 live at Gillette Stadium in exchange for a pair of torn acid-washed jeans and a couple of lawn (dirt) seats to see the REO Speedwagon/Journey twin bill at the local county fair (monster truck show and/or demolition derby admittance not included, although plenty of livestock available to pet and smell, err, scratch and sniff).
    The gist of the argument of those heaping praise on Brilliant Bill is that he sheared the fleece off of the blue ribbon-winning lamb and, as is always the case with the Brainy-er-than-thou Belichick, the fleece immediately and magically turned to gold.
    The gist of the argument of those heaping stable remnants on Al amounted to discounting the possibility that he may have actually done something right because his recent track record is a tad (trying to be kind) deplorable (end of kindness). And while we willfully acknowledge that Al has made his share of poor personnel (DeAngelo Hall, Javon Walker, Randy Moss, et al.) and coaching decisions (hiring bed and breakfast proprietor Tom Walsh to be offensive coordinator in 2006 and Lane Kiffin, who he introduced as “Lance”, as head coach in 2007) that does not automatically preclude the nearly blind, potentially senile, squirrel from taking a nut away from Darth Hoodie.
    Someone, other than Kyle, the heel, needs to defend Raider Nation and often times in this space we choose to take the view less traveled (sympathy for the devil’s advocate) in an attempt to elucidate an alternative opinion, or in this case, since nobody has bothered to outline the potential positives for the Silver and Black, to give the conflicting view it’s just due. Consider it a much-needed counterbalance to the lopsided coverage that has lulled the brains of the masses (via the media) into accepting, with nary a question, the gospel of Bill as the word.
    So if you’re tired of the same old story, oh, turn some pages. Or simply keep reading.
    Oakland desperately needed help on the defensive line. Last year the Raiders finished 31st (out of 32) teams in rushing yards allowed and gave up a generous 4.7 yards per attempt. They got a proven (five time) Pro Bowl player that started for them the first week of the season in exchange for an unknown player that could turn out to be expensive trash (a draft bust) and definitely won’t see the field for New England until the fall of 2011 (for some perspective consider that the four-year-old will be 50% older by then). Also take into account the fact that Seymour became the best lineman on the team the moment he (reluctantly) accepted the trade and that his presence made the other lineman better by forcing the opposition to use two linemen to block him thus allowing Greg Ellis et al. to have easier matchups.
    There is a good chance that the AFC West could be the worst division in football, therefore, simply adding one blue-chip player could be the difference between contending and floundering. If you consider that Seymour was the sixth overall pick in the 2001 draft, and has been a key element in three Super Bowl championship teams, one might believe that he could very well be the difference.
    A fair amount of the anti-Al vitriol (anti-ol vitri-Al?) was derived from the fact that Seymour will be a free agent at the end of this season and would be visiting Oaktown for only one year. Somehow the seemingly clairvoyant reporters forgot that any team (yes, even the Raiders) in the NFL has the ability to place the franchise designation on a player essentially ending his chances of hitting the open market.
    Beyond the perceived one-year detriment with the contract lies the hidden (to those who chose not to look) benefit to the situation. Oftentimes players in a contract year tend to perform quite well (Albert Haynesworth) and in many cases have career years. Money equals motivation.
    In the rush to dump (the preferred term actually rhymes with surname of Titans receiver Kenny Britt) on the Raiders the fact that this trade won’t be accurately judged for a few years seemed to be overlooked. As it stands now Seymour has two years to make the Raiders feel good about not having that pick in 2011. If JaMarcus Russel develops, Seymour dominates, Nnamdi Asomugha is himself, Darren McFadden runs wild and, instead of breaking the jaws of his minions, Coach Tom Cable learns to ride the storm out, then the Raiders could actually be a good team and the first-round pick could be much lower than is currently being anticipated.
    As Al said (and we paraphrase), I knew it had to happen, felt the tables turnin’. Don’t look now, but after two games the Raiders and Patriots have the same record and the Raiders have allowed fewer points. Seymour has lined up at all four positions on the defensive line and has 9 tackles and 2 sacks in his first 8 days as a Raider. He may have gotten this team through its darkest hour, and he now appears ready to accept the trade and roll with the changes.
    We’re not trying to say that the Raider organization is running smoothly at the moment. We are simply trying to point out that sometimes biased and lazy people rush to choose the obvious conclusion, rather than accurately describing the circumstances involved, even when the outcome of the situation truly won’t be known for years. The Pats could very well be the big winners in this exchange. The issue we have is that everyone is rushing the judgment without vetting the facts of this particular deal and simply basing their conclusions on the assumed (you, me) acumen of Lord Belichick versus the perceived (and often displayed) denseness of Dullard Davis. There is no doubt that the initial, kneejerk, reaction should be to trust Belichick over Davis, however, the merits of deal should be viewed from all angles and discussed as they relate to both sides. From what we were able to ascertain from monitoring the extensive coverage of the deal, that never happened. For that, the intrepid NFL reporting mob should be ashamed, unless, of course, they could only view the situation from one angle since they were under the bleachers trying to get a better view of Steve Perry.

  29. “They hate their coach!”
    Tom Jackson after the Patriots lose to the Buffalo Bills 31-0 to begin the 2003 season.
    The Patriots have gone 82-20, or 80% winning percentage since in the regular season, won two Super Bowls and appeared in another.
    Seems like it’s working.

  30. @wisky..
    Dunno know who you’re for or against so I’ve no hate…
    I just didn’t have the time or interest to go through all of that..
    Been holding that in a while?
    Tighter and shorter………For all of us bro.

  31. Did anybody actually make it to the end of Wisky’s post? I went comatose after the third paragraph ……. dude, publish the book and leave us to posts under 6,000 words.

  32. Maybe BB should head to Washington to tell O about “cost benefit analysis.” To the rest of the league…BITE ME. There’s a reason they’re competitive every year, and its because they run their business better than everyone else. To receive a high (potentially, with a rookie salary cap) 1st for an eight year vet whose contract is up, playing the back nine…are you kdding me? You dont need a Wesleysn education (which Bill has) to figure that one out. In Bill we trust…Go Pats!!

  33. It seems like a good trade for them and I agree for the most part. But what if this year was the last year the Patriots had a real possibility of winning the superbowl for a while but now they dont have the pieces up front to get them over the top, and then they get their new guy with that 1st round pick but his talent doesnt pan out for a couple of years if ever. And by the time he starts playing like a number 1 the patriots dont have the piece to compete for a super bowl anymore.
    What Im saying is the way I think about these things is you never know what your going to have 1 year to the next in the NFL. Injuries, old age, or any number of things can ruin your chances. So when you have a team your confident can win it all, why take the risk of getting rid of one of your top players and making your championship run that much harder. My thinking is win today dont sell the present for the future, because when the future comes what says you wont do the same thing all over again and get rid of 1 of your top players. We all know the draft is a crap shoot and if you make these trades enough your going to get burnt. The draft is like a casino the house always wins in the end.

  34. @besdayz
    2007 was a great draft, if you consider a 2nd rounder for Welker and a 4th rounder for Moss, it was a steal. Welker has had 100+ catch seasons for the Patriots.
    They also turned a late round 1st pick into a 2008 early round pick (49ers) and got Mayo for that.
    Belichick realizes that the draft is an inexact science, and so he trades his chips in and gets as many 2nd-4th round players as possible, in the hopes that a few of them stick.
    You don’t have to like it, but acknowledge that if your team did it, you’d be happy.
    p.s., you’re right, 2006 was a poor draft year

  35. i CAN NOT stand bill belichick… but he is absolutely right… i wish the raiders would run their organization like that… u can thank bill belichick for tom brady everyone

  36. Calling my shot right here (as I’ve already done it here earlier) !
    I GUARANTEE that the 2011 pick the Pats got for Seymore will go to drafting Brady’s successor.
    Brady is going on 33 and one knee. They can use that (possibly) high pick to get a good QB, sit him for a year or 2 until Brady hits 35 his contract nears the end and they have his successor waiting in the wings.
    Count on it!

  37. @wisky,
    ok jackass, i read the whole thing. that was an article from week 2. seriously. why would you post that? such a waste of my frigin time…..asshole

  38. Memo to Dan Snyder
    BUY HIM !!!!!
    Seriously, it won’t be long until ALL GM’s copy the Belichik model.
    The salary cap has forced this strategy. This is the only way to have a TALENTED & DEEP (all 53 spots) ROSTER – loaded with EARLY ROUND picks
    Long Term success is about taking hard decisions as well as a LONG TERM strategy that gives your team an ADVANTAGE over competitors.
    There are NO $100 Million Salaries in New England – yet MY redskins stink

  39. Well, as the old Oakland saying goes..
    “Commitment to Excrement!”
    Seymore is a great player but getting a first rounder (especially the Raiders first rounder) is a dream! I’ll bet they did a double-take when they got that offer and considered his contract situation.

    Want to see a true winner, look towards the Black & Gold. When the Steelers win # 7, they will be the Team of the Decade. Then, maybe Florio will quit licking Belicheat’s ballz.

  41. Bill Belichick is simply better than your Coach!
    He’s an x and o’s guy, a General Manager and has one of the best Football minds in the game today and over the last 10 years with the Patriots his record is unmatched!!! I know this really chaps your azz, but I don’t care! ha ha
    “I just want to coach the Patriots,” when defering questions he doesn’t want to answer! Some Coaches just can’t control themselves ie…Rex Ryan, Tom Cable and Saint Dungy passing out judgements from Heaven.
    Queue the band…..Cheaters, spys, *********
    Why do the Patriots win almost every year???
    Stability in the franchise. A clear direction of how business is done. A great owner who doesn’t bully his opinions on the Coach! Yep, BB shops for the groceries, cooks the dinner and serves up desert! Oh I almost forgot 5 SuperBowl rings!
    5 rings, 5 count em haters, losers, wah wah wah……2 with the Giants, 3 Patriots Rings suckas….that’s why you hate the guy so much!

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