Belichick shows team 2009 play (but not 2010 play)

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Publicly, Patriots coach Bill Belichick has said all the right things (or, perhaps more accurately, none of the wrong things) about the final play of Monday night’s loss to the Panthers.  On Wednesday, he told reporters repeatedly that he has moved on to the next game.

Before doing so, however, Belichick turned back the clock.

According to Mike Reiss of, Belichick showed his players film from the 2009 game between the Browns and the Lions.  Belichick’s protégé-turned-nemesis, Eric Mangini, lost to Detroit after an interference call on a Hail Mary throw to the end zone gave the home team an untimed play from the one.  The call of interference stood even though the ball was intercepted in front of the Lions player who had been wiped about by another Cleveland defender.

Point made:  The same standard wasn’t applied to the Patriots.

But Belichick presumably didn’t share video with his team from their own 2010 game against the quarterback the Patriots are now preparing to face yet again.  With the Colts at the New England 24, 37 seconds left, and trailing 31-28, Peyton Manning fired the ball down the right sideline, toward Pierre Garςon near the goal line.  The ball was underthrown, and Patriots defensive back Devin McCourty had his hands on Garςon, keeping him from getting back to the ball.

Meanwhile, Patriots defensive back James Sanders sprang up at the nine and intercepted it.

There was no flag.  No Manning face.  No “F” bombs dropped on the referee as he ran off the field.  No controversy.  No anything.  The ball was picked off by Sanders, making it not catchable by Garςon.

There likely are other examples of underthrown balls that were intercepted in front of contact that would have been interference.  In all cases, interference becomes negated if the ball is deemed uncatchable.  In all cases, it’s a judgment call.

Making the call in this case more conspicuous was that the back judge threw the flag before picking it up.  Changing his mind meant that he changed his real-time judgment that interference happened to an after-the-fact determination that it didn’t. And it was poorly explained by referee Clete Blakeman, as the league has acknowledged.

Regardless, showing current Patriots players video from a four-year-old game that featured the opposite outcome fails to tell the whole story about pass interference on underthrown balls that are intercepted, without showing them video of a game played three years ago today — involving their own team and the quarterback they’ll play again in three days.

77 responses to “Belichick shows team 2009 play (but not 2010 play)

  1. what does the past have to do with the present?

    that was a terrible no call.
    the ref’s should be susceptible to fines just like the players.
    The fact there are no consequences for their terrible play is ridiculous.

    & a coach should be able to challenge until they get one wrong. these 50+ year old referees definitely miss a lot.

  2. In short, unless a rule is interpreted in someone’s favor, they’re going to be pissed.

    As a panthers fan, I hated this. I can’t stand when wins are called into question. Although I agree that ball was uncatchable, I have no clue what Kuechly was thinking by doing that. We didn’t need any level of interference to stop that play.

  3. I remember that play clearly and it was nothing like the play on Monday. Florio, why do you try and fire up all the Patriot haters? You are the leader of the pack. Patriots have lost three games all with crazy endings, and all to decent teams. OK, maybe not the Jets. When they lose it becomes a national media craze. As bad as you went them to, the Patriots aren’t going anywhere. Accept the fact that they will be deep into the playoffs this year and for MANY more years to come.

  4. The difference between the 2009 game and the 2010 game was there was a flag thrown in 09 but not in the 2010 game. And this article gleened what it wanted as the point of Belichick showing his team that game was that you cannot let a final play of the game dictate the outcome.

    Still think it was a bad call as many analysts have agreed but the Patriots let opportunities to win the game earlier slip away as in Ridley’s fumble etc. The Panthers game showed the offense is back and fully expect for New England to win a shoot out Sunday night.

    Payme Manning’s history is he does not play well in games below 32 degrees ( 2-9) and its going to be New England football weather at game time 20 degrees.

    Should be a great game between two of the best teams in the AFC.

  5. Rather sick of hearing about this call. A), don’t put yourself in that position to begin with to be reliant upon a call and B), there is no guarantee they would have gotten in the end zone from the 1 on the last play.

  6. The beginning of the end is coming for BB and he knows it.

    This team is will be back to pre Tom Brady & Drew Bledsoe days soon.

  7. If Belichick want to inspire his lousy team, he should show them footage of the Ravens playoff run last season. Best playoff run in the history of the NFL, lead by the greatest to ever play the game Ray God Lewis!!

  8. I couldnt agree more with this article. Its a judgement call. These things go either way all the time. The ref might have thought PI on a split second decision which is why he threw the flag, but then after the conference they determined that a ball that is in the hands of a defender 5 yards in front of Gronk would be impossible for him to have caught, hence they picked up the flag.

    Biggest mistake was not explaining it at the time.

  9. Let’s not forget. Manning’s Colts were so injured that season he took a group of UDFAs into Foxboro (Blair White anyone?) and still nearly beat the Pats. A great performance given the state the Colts were in at the time

  10. If BB wanted an example of a season changing blatant non call, then he should have showed film on the Giant / 49’s playoff game in 2003.

    Now that was an Effen Travesty!!

    They have to be able over turn bad calls, or in this case and the Pat’s game, a call that should have been made.

  11. myeaglescantwin says: Nov 21, 2013 7:21 AM

    “…. these 50+ year old referees definitely miss a lot.””

    LOL.. What are you TWELVE? Nobody over 50 is capable of seeing anything?

    Too funny….

  12. When Brady told the ref “That’s effin poor” I spit soda out of my mouth in laughter. Its ashame they muted the sound right after that so we couldnt hear what else he was saying.

  13. ravanator says: Nov 21, 2013 7:48 AM

    If Belichick want to inspire his lousy team, he should show them footage of the Ravens playoff run last season. Best playoff run in the history of the NFL, lead by the greatest to ever play the game Ray God Lewis!!
    You mean “Ray-I-Got-Away-With-Murder Lewis?”

  14. 3 days later and this is still in the news. Sheesh. Just imagine what would have happened had the Pats been in the Packers’ position last season when that replacement official screwed them out of the win against the Hawks when there was zero debate on that blown call. The coverage wouldn’t have ever ended and the media probably would have demanded the Pats be handed the next 5 superbowl wins.

    I do like Florio bringing up the Colts game to show the moron Pats fans that this isn’t some Pats conspiracy and that other teams get the short end of the stick regarding this NFL RULE. That is something Pats fans seems to ignore that it is a rule based on the official’s judgement.

    Maybe they need to just end the season now and hand the Pats the superbowl trophy. After all we have two outcomes now that involved an official going by the NFL rulebook and they came out on the short end of it. Clearly they are being held down by the league.

  15. The second example you use has NOTHING to do with the first, or the play on Monday night. In that case, the refs never saw the interference call and didn’t throw a flag. Entirely different than throwing a flag on a much more obvious pass interference call then picking it up because you were bullied by the crowd.

  16. .

    “He’s trying to motivate them, not train them for second careers as referees ”

    Revised conspiracy theory : not only did Belichick steal playbooks, film team meetings, rustle draft choices and pay all his players straight cash, but now he’s opened up a referee training camp to ensure another call will never go against the Patriots.


  17. therealtruth210 says:
    Nov 21, 2013 7:25 AM

    where are all the copies of the films that you got caught video taping other teams Bill? I would love to see them

    UMMMMM…..get over it little boy

  18. I’m sure Manning would’ve had some choice words for those referees if they had thrown a flag and then picked it up.

    Two things that still bother me about this play… if the referee thought it was PI and made a split second decision to throw a flag, he shouldnt pick it back up after further “thought”. Secondly, why would a referee 20 yards down the field overrule a referee that was literally 5 yards away?

    Regardless, the Patriots took far too many downs to get the ball down the field. Ridley doesn’t fumble the ball on the 10 yard line, we probably win that game. Overall, the Pats Offense looked good, and their defense looked okay (with the exception of a few long scrambles). I doubt they’ll have to worry about Peyton beating them with his legs.

  19. Colts lovers and Pats haters forget the Ellis Hobbs fake PI call or “Face guarding” and that did cost the Patriots a SB….cause next was the Chicago Bears. So if you can assume the Patriots would win a SB even though the had to face the 2 best teams after a tuck rule call then you can assume they would’ve beat the Bears. I think its just a lot of envy. I respect the Pats for being consistently good and always playing well despite injuries or roster turnover.

  20. yeah – it WAS judgement call. The official that threw the flag made a judgment of pass interference. The decision to pick it up however was a rational, objective one.

  21. It would be great if there was a link to the highlights from the ’09 and ’10 games you’re referring to. My guess is that they’re really not all that similar..

  22. Or the obvious no call holding by the Pats on the Saints DE just a few weeks ago on the last play that allowed the Pats to escape with a win. What goes around….

  23. Raiders fans are so amusing. They whine about the tuck rule while conveniently forgetting that when the Raiders got to the Super Bowl the next year, the Tampa Bay Bucs crushed them. Raiders = not ready for prime time.

  24. I don’t see how a 50 yard hail mary from the 50 yard line where the ball is in the air for 5 seconds where the intended receiver is blatantly pushed out of bounds is at all relevant to this play where a 15 yard bullet underthrown by 7 yards

  25. Gronk couldn’t catch the ball? ESPN Sports Science disagrees with you.

    How about point out the obvious fact that the home team benefited in all of these cases? Or just keep trolling the Pats.

  26. The terrible part is that the first official who threw the flag got it right. It was the head referee who applied the political lens to the situation, and decided that awarding New England an untimed play from the 1 wasn’t conducive to getting out of Carolina’s stadium unharmed. I am no fan of The Hoodie, (I view the helmet catch as the most beautiful moment in NFL history) but the fact is that on that particular play, he got jammed due to a lack of courage from the officiating crew.

  27. Sometimes I think there is always a rogue ref who slips up and throws a flag out of the honesty of his heart only to have the head “company” ref tell him to “pick it up”…As if to say “hey, we did our jobs time to go home”

  28. The pass was nowhere near Gronk so PI isn’t even a consideration. Defensive holding would be. Its a 5 yard penalty. So even if it was called its one try from the Panthers 13. Patriots still lose. Stop this needless drama.

  29. That’s just like ole typical Bill Belichick. He’ll show how his team was the victim of a bad call but wont show how the patriots have gotten over on other teams. I mean dang Carolina NEVER catches a break on a call and when we finally get one its made out to be one of the most atrocious call ever.

  30. If you want examples of calls not made against patriots you can put on film of any of the times they played against the ravens and Suggs was flagged for roughing the passer when he never even got close enough to touch Brady. Acting and official/nfl bias. Vegas factor!

  31. If Belichick wants to show videos of old games, why doesn’t he pull out the tapes from the cheating scandal that tainted their championships. I’m sure he made copies before letting Goodell destroy them.

  32. watermelon, the only time i can remember a call like that against Brady was when Brady just came back from knee surgery and Suggs intentionally dove at his knees to knock him out of the game. That was 5 years ago and Suggs is still whining and crying about it.

  33. How are the championships tainted if the rule wasnt in effect until 2007, and as many of you point out, they havent one anything since then….

  34. They keep saying they are over this call, yet I keep reading about someone from the Patriots talking about it or mentioning it. I mean, Tom Brady said his MOM thought it was a penalty. Games been over for a few days now, whining about a call won’t change the facts. Panthers got a win Pats didn’t.

  35. Why still harping about this? Even with a PI called there is still no guarantee that the Pats would have scored on a free play.

    Jeez, Get Over It!

    We have fresh football tonight.

  36. I doubt Brady is running around saying “My mom thought it was a penalty!!”

    Its probably more a situation taken out of context (see the Plax SB remarks) from someone that asked a question several days ago.

  37. Pats fan here.
    2 problems on that play :
    – No need to throw a flag here, it was uncatchable.
    – Put Gronk closer to the goal line, not at the back of the end zone. Put him at the 1 or 2 yards line and challenge the def to stop him after the catch. Throw a catchable ball!!!

  38. Brady made the comments about his mom yesterday on November 20th. He was asked about the play and said “No final thoughts, My mom thought it was a penalty — does that count?” It was said in jest surely, but it shows they are still dwelling on it.

  39. Just watched that play from 2010 and I must say, Florio you are REALLY stretching it on this one. Garcon wasn’t even held, and by the time he turned around the ball had already been intercepted. Just feeding the fire for haters if you ask me.

  40. Actually, dynamitelarry it shows other people are dwelling on it. You say “He was asked….” not “He was telling people….”

    he answered a question.

  41. Ah right, see I figured he could have just said the line after that “No more thoughts. We’re moving on to Denver.” I mean that does imply that he’s ready to move past it, where a joke still means he’s talking about it.

  42. you point out the colt play but you’re missing an important piece – there was NO flag thrown unlike the cle-det game.

    Biggest misconception is that NE somehow makes the rules and gets all the calls –

    “tom brady” rule on hitting low – see Carson Palmer/Von Ol Hoffen.

    “tuck rule” – NE/OAK – see Testaverde/Jets v Pats earlier that year.

  43. Go to YouTube and search “Manning intercepted by Sanders”

    Garcon and McCourty are not even in the picture!

    How embarrassing for Tony Dungy to be trying to sneak something like this into the news as a way of getting back at NE, Belichick, and Brady for whooping his behind for years. Geez, be a man Tony, be a man…..

  44. I posted about the holding non-call against the Saints on the last play, but I included a link to a picture, so they didn’t allow it through. Fine, look it up yourself. Clear and obvious holding around the neck, while Brady still had the ball in his hands, not called. Sometimes you win with the (non) call, sometimes you lose. Can’t win them all.

  45. I have no problem with him letting the team know that he feels it was a wrong call, and that they can trust that their coach knows his stuff, as long as they truly are moving on, because NFL Queen Manning is coming to town with a media backed agenda, with Mini Me in tow, looking to embarrass them on national TV and by proxy make the MNF game ending some how legitimate, by virtue of making the Pats look like they are not that good. The only way out of this is to win Sunday night, and from that point forward, and hope the Chiefs beat the Broncos, and then stumble themselves.

  46. If you look at the play from the Colts game on you tube, Garcon and McCourty are not in the picture. The Colts receiver that IS in the picture and may be the one targeted, is Jacob Tamme. The ball was over his head too. I’m not sure why this is reported as a pass to Garcon. My guess is Manning wanted to throw to Garcon, saw the coverage at the last minute, got confused about maybe wanting to throw to Tamme, and middled the ball. Regardless, nobody from the Colts was going to catch that ball and there was no flag thrown anyway.

  47. A couple of years ago Tebow threw a hail mary into the end aone against the chargers, chargers player took the denver receiver to the ground when the ball was in the air. No call. Game over.

    Fact of the matter is this…those types of calls are almost never made on the last play of the game because the refs dont want to be viewed as handing the team a win. Moving along…

  48. Agreed with 17Days above. The misconception the Pats “get all the calls” is ridiculous. Going back a ways, the Raiders vs Pats in 1976 is concidered the worst officiated game in the history of the league… So the “Tuck RULE” IS BARELY PAY BACK. How many times has the “pushing” call called vs the Pats in the Jets game been called this year? Once. Enough said… phantom PI on Asante Samuel in 2005 in Denver, the missed call when the Pats TE, Ben Watson knocked the ball out of Champ Baileys hands which should have been a touch back, the phantom “Hand to the head” in 2006 vs The Colts, the non holding call on the Tyree catch where a Giants lineman was choking and pulling Richard Seymour down from behind, the Baltimore game last year… the league screwing the Pats over for “Spygate”… im just sick of this league and the media bias, its too bad because the clear anti (any team) bias is so unprofessional and thats what kids are reading these days. There is no accountibility in life or sports these days… if you are unhappy or getting beat, just accuse someone of cheating. Its a lot easier than working hard to make yourself better. The only thing more guaranteed than games on Sunday is fans whining on Monday.

  49. vietnambob2473 says:
    Nov 21, 2013 3:29 PM
    “A couple of years ago Tebow threw a hail mary into the end aone against the chargers, chargers player took the denver receiver to the ground when the ball was in the air. No call. Game over.

    Fact of the matter is this…those types of calls are almost never made on the last play of the game because the refs dont want to be viewed as handing the team a win. Moving along…”

    This is something that seems to be understood between coaching staffs and the refs, no one ever really complains. And I doubt anyone would have, except that once the flag is thrown the can of worms is open.

  50. A great game ruined by crappy officiating… time to move on…

    Manning V Brady … God I hope the Pats show up for this… The offense is going to have to have a great night… I expect the injured D to get shredded… Wes is gonna have a good night … I know it. (heavy *sigh*)

  51. vietnambob2473 says:
    Nov 21, 2013 3:29 PM
    “A couple of years ago Tebow threw a hail mary into the end aone against the chargers, chargers player took the denver receiver to the ground when the ball was in the air. No call. Game over.

    Fact of the matter is this…those types of calls are almost never made on the last play of the game because the refs dont want to be viewed as handing the team a win. Moving along…”

    This is something that seems to be understood between coaching staffs and the refs, no one ever really complains. And I doubt anyone would have, except that once the flag is thrown the can of worms is open.


    It happened a week before in the Lions/Bears game and the penalty stood.

  52. In 1998, the 7-4 Buffalo Bills were playing the 6-5 New England Patriots for the second time in three weeks.

    The Patriots’ final drive began at their own 10-yard lone with 1:52 on the clock. Drew Bledsoe completed his first four pass attempts for 40 yards as the Patriots moved to the Buffalo 37. The Patriots were only able to gain one yard over their next three plays, setting up a crucial 4th-and-9 with only 11 second left. Bledsoe fired a 10-yard pass to Shawn Jefferson, who caught the ball at the sideline. The Bills disputed that the receiver had first down yardage and was in bounds, but the officials ruled a Patriot first down. In postgame interviews, both Reed and Flutie claimed they overheard the refs say, “just give it to them.”

    The next play began with only six seconds on the clock and the Patriots on the Bills’ 26. Bledsoe heaved a pass into the end zone with the ball bouncing out of receiver Terry Glenn’s hands. But a pass interference call on Bills safety Henry Jones gave the Patriots a free play with no time left on the clock.

  53. But Patriots cornerback Ty Law was sympathetic toward the Bills’ plight. “If I was them, I’d be ticked off, too,” said Law. “You never see that call on a Hail Mary. I know where they’re coming from. These officials are making way too many calls. It’s getting worse and worse every week.”

  54. Folks, we are way too invested in making excuses for Tom Brady and the Patriots regarding there loss to a very
    good Carolina Panthers team who deserved to win. Even Tom Brady understood this and he refuses to wallow in excuses. Some calls go your way and some don’t, that’s the way the ball bounces, so to speak. Had the back judge not dropped the flag we would be giving Cam Newton and the Panthers the credit they deserve. The Patriots played well but just not quite well enough. So in essence I guess what I’m saying is ‘GET OVER IT’!

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