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Bill Belichick avoids saying he once worked for the Jets

Bill Belichick may be a Lord Voldemort-type figure for some in the football world, but it was another name that Belichick avoided saying during his Wednesday press conference.

Belichick and the Patriots are practicing with the Texans this week and the Patriots coach was asked about his long relationship with Texans assistant head coach Romeo Crennel during the press conference.

“Well, Romeo and I started together at the Giants in special teams, so he and I coached special teams together and then we coached defensively together through 1990,” Belichick said in comments distributed by the team. “We worked at the Patriots together, then another team, and then back with the Patriots in 2001. I’ve relied on him through the years, both with our team when I worked with him, but even at times outside when we could help each other and it wasn’t a conflict in competitiveness.”

“Another team” would be the Jets, who wanted Belichick to be their head coach when Bill Parcells stepped down after the 1999 season and had paid him a $1 million bonus the previous year to keep him in the organization. Belichick’s contract called for him to succeed Parcells, but he famously re-signed with a hastily scrawled note and went to New England instead.

That led to a squabble between the teams that ended with a first-round pick going to the Jets in exchange for Belichick’s services. The bad feelings continued when Eric Mangini left the Patriots to coach the Jets and touched off Spygate by reporting the Patriots’ videotaping habits during the 2007 season.

Belichick’s gotten the better of the team that can not be named on the field over the last two decades and could get another win at their expense if signing linebacker David Harris works out for New England this season.