Bill Belichick spars with reporters over whether they were “close” to making a trade

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Bill Belichick has officially become the old man who yells at clouds. Then again, he was yelling at clouds long before he turned 70.

On Wednesday, Belichick had a prototypical exchange with reporters regarding whether the Patriots came close to making a deal at the trade deadline.

Here’s the first relevant question, from the transcript: “You mentioned last week that Eliot [Wolf] and Matt [Groh] would handle most of the business around the trade deadline. What did they convey to you around that time or afterward about how close you came to making a trade?”

“Yeah, we’re done,” Belichick said. “The trade deadline is over, so we’re moving on to the Colts.”

“Were you close?”

“Nothing happened, so we’re moving on,” Belichick said. “I don’t even know what close means. What does that mean?”

“As far as negotiations, as far as the round, the draft pick or a player? Were there extended negotiations?”

“I’ve had conversations that have gone on for months and nothing happened,” Belichick said. “I’ve had conversations that have gone on for six to ten minutes and the trade gets done. I don’t know what that means.”

Why didn’t he just say it’s all hypothetical?

It would be interesting to know whether the Patriots tried to play for a make a deal. Considering the way he raved earlier this year about Chase Claypool, it wouldn’t be a surprise to learn that the Patriots made a run at getting him, and that they were in it long an close enough to get a call when the Steelers decided to trade Claypool to Chicago.

33 responses to “Bill Belichick spars with reporters over whether they were “close” to making a trade

  1. He did say it was hypothetical without using that word. And good for BB because 75% of the public, and 95% of the people who post on this site, have no idea what “hypothetical’ means.

    The Pats are not SB contenders this year. Maybe next year when McDaniels is back as OC but not this year. So no need for the Pats to make any deals unless they would get a ridiculous deal.

  2. Brady and video cameras made his entire career. Horrible with Cleveland, awful with Mac Jones

  3. By the time press conference is done ,the reporters are more frustrated than BB. He loves toying with them.

  4. Just as with asking about roster decisions days in advance of the game, this is something where there’s really no upside to a team providing this information. So, no real reason to even ask it, because it seems silly to think a team will share what it did or didn’t try to do or succeed in doing.

  5. If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results, then the Boston-area media members are stark raving mad.

  6. Has there ever been a more unlikeable coach in NFL history? Colorful is one thing… perpetually rude and crabby is another.

  7. As a Dolphins fan I can still respect his answer to this question, and he’s exactly right. The only way you can measure closeness is if another team took the player you wanted and then you’ll know if your offer was close or way off. And to go down that road on any player you missed out on is to admit you lost a close negotiation or wanted a player you couldn’t afford – neither of which reflect well on you or your current team. His answer makes sense. On to Indianapolis.

  8. It’s not Belichick that’s the mystery, it’s the media’s surprise and indignance at his answers. What Belichick said is the answer. What does the media expect BB to say? Oh, we tried to dump so and so, but nobody would take his contract. Or, we made a run at so and so , but his team wanted a 1rst. Absurd. No HC worth a thing is gonna tell the media that. No matter how many different ways they ask the question. Strange people, these media.

  9. Poor senile old belicheat looking more like sleepy joe everyday, the last place team he handpicked is terrible, his massively overpaid FA replacement level bums and colossal draft busts like mac baby noodle jones getting worse every season.

    He should’ve retired the second Brady got sick of him being a bloated parasite instead of sticking around and getting completely exposed as utterly inept and frankly, lost.

  10. Not just Belichick in this case. Is there a GM that answers this question with anything substantive? “We had discussions about different players and nothing materialized…” or some variation thereof is about all you’d get from anyone.

  11. This guy is the tool of all tools, please leave so I can root for my ex favorite team again. And about the reporters trying to do their job, no one should show up for his press conferences, which would delight Bill and annoy Kraft

  12. Him honestly answering the reporters question would not have affected the outcome of this weeks game – or any other game – at all. It doesn’t matter. He can choose to answer questions or act like a jerk. He chooses jerk because he enjoys it.

  13. Belichick doesn’t speak about players on other teams unless he’s heaping praise on them the week leading up to a game. Why on earth would he talk about being close to acquiring a player? What good does it do other than letting one guy still on the roster know he was close to being gone or if you mention a player at a certain position from another roster it could ruffle feathers with your own squad. Maybe someone will DM Ben Volin with another fake story about how close any trade opportunities were.

  14. This seems like one of the less egregious non-answers in Bill’s repertoire. As Sgt. Rigg’s might say, “Close is a lingerie shop without any windows.”

  15. Belichick has has a lot more patience than I do. Maybe he doesn’t know how MJones ankle is gonna respond to a full week of practice on Wed morning. Maybe he doesn’t want to discuss trades after the deadline is up, since it’s moot. Not sure he can discuss acquiring other teams players anyway. Maybe he doesn’t want to talk about last week’s game when the teams attention is on this week. But the media often won’t let it go. 5 straight guys will try to reframe the question as if they’re gonna trick him into answering it the way they want. Then BB gets exasperated and wants to move on and stop wasting everyone’s time. It’s as if the media wants to coax the belligerence out of him and make it the story. As I said, he has more patience than I would.

  16. Maybe Jones and the OL ought to start playing better before the team shops for new toys.

  17. One of these days he’s gonna be rude to the wrong person. Always treat people with respect.

  18. remizak says:
    November 2, 2022 at 4:58 pm
    If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results, then the Boston-area media members are stark raving mad.

    The Boston media members know it’s a game and enjoy playing it. A couple weeks ago Mike Reiss of ESPN accidentally interrupted Bill thinking his answer was finished, and immediately apologized for cutting the coach off. Belichick says Good that you stopped me, I was about to go into the details of our quarterback plans for next Sunday. Everybody laughed because they’re all in on the joke together.

  19. Mr. Kraft has been watching BB’s three-ring clown show circus for over three years now. Not a single playoff victory. Believe me, Billy will get the hook in 2023.

  20. A poster that relentlessly trashes Belichick and Jones is calling out Bill for being rude and disrespectful. It speaks for itself.

  21. birdwatcher100 says:
    November 2, 2022 at 6:45 pm
    He’s like Andy Reid in Philly. Without winning, he has nothing.


    Winning is the entire point of the job, so any coach without winning has nothing.

  22. agree with Belichick here… trade deadline is past, what difference does it make if they were “close” or not to making a trade… all that little tidbit of info would do is lead to more probing questions that ultimately, if answered, would lead to a current player being upset… what is the point of that??!! I love reporters that feel they are “owed” information from the head coach… He is not paid to make your job easier, he is paid to run the team and keep players happy and buying into the overall scheme

  23. This shouldn’t have even been a story. We have decades of tape on this coach. He doesn’t suffer fools, as they say.

    Personally, I like it when he’s in a lighthearted mood and goofs w/ the press more. But if he’s not, this is what they get.

    He reminds me a lot of Popovich in the NBA. Another amazing coach who can have a tense relationship w/ the press at times.

  24. This is so typical of reporters, particularly Florio – there isn’t a real story there so they make a story out of the fact that there’s NOT a tory, and then they become the one who broke the story.
    Billsrthefuture – your “He doesn’t suffer fools” – well said, and I’m a Patsfan.

    Good luck this year – IT DON’T MEAN A THING IF YOU AIN’T GOT THAT RING.

  25. Ya reporters can be tough for people more comfortable with four letter words. BB’s antics are old tired and stale he is an embarrassment to the coaching profession

  26. What’s the problem here? You either make a deadline deal or you don’t. The deadline is over, and they moved on. Belichick explained the situation perfectly.

  27. Bill’s point is if the Patriots really wanted a trade to happen, it would have happened. Since it did NOT happen, the proximity of any deal getting done is a moot point. “We’re on to the Colts”

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