It’s laughable to think Bill Belichick is on the hot seat


Less than two weeks from his 69th birthday and three weeks from his 22nd year leading the NFL Draft in New England, it would seem that Bill Belichick is about as secure in his job as any coach in any sport.

Heck, as any person in any industry.

But apparently bringing six Lombardi Trophies to Gillette Stadium in nine trips to the Super Bowl while recording a winning record in 19 of the last 21 seasons of parity-driven NFL action doesn’t go quite as far as it used to. Maybe Belichick is indeed the aging gold standard in a new-age world of digital currency.

Because apparently, some think that after going 7-9 in the COVID-controlled first season without Tom Brady under center in Foxborough Belichick – whether it be the Patriots coach, the GM or both -- is on the hot seat.

Early on the Monday morning after Easter we’ll call that silly, even if a much more vulgar description of the Belichick hot seat idea is warranted. It’s an idea spread by April fools who cannot be excused by April Fool’s.

The only hot seat Belichick is on these days is the one in his car as he heads to work each chilly early morning spring day working to rebuild the Patriots.

The supposed reasoning behind the hot seat idiocy, beyond simply the first playoff-free season in New England since 2008 and first losing season since Belichick’s inaugural campaign in 2000, is the fact that his passionate boss, Patriots owner Robert Kraft, admitted last week that watching 2020 transpire was “horrible.” Kraft also noted in his half-hour conference call with local reporters that he doesn’t feel Belichick’s “done the greatest job the last few years” in the draft, forcing New England’s historically aggressive free agent spending spree this offseason.

Extrapolate beyond those honest assessments from the man who was a longtime fan before he was the owner and patriarch of Patriot Nation and some think it’s time to start looking for a new man the run the show in Foxborough.

There is one problem with that, though, because elsewhere in his long talk with the media Kraft also called Belichick “maybe the best to ever do it,” while praising the stability of the organization and being “pretty happy” with the relationship he has with his top football employee. Kraft also has a well-told history, in all his businesses, of hiring good people and letting them do their jobs.

All that’s to say Belichick isn’t going anywhere. Not unless he wants to go or he decides as he approaches Marv Levy land of NFL longevity that he simply doesn’t want to do the job anymore. And he’s shown no signs of that, in fact he’s now pulling within reach of Don Shula’s record of 347 NFL wins. Smell that? That’s late-career motivation.

Not mention all the pot-shots his reputation and legacy have taken over the last year as he stumbled through a Cam Newton-led season while Brady brought a title with him to Tampa Bay.

Whether he wants to admit or not, for the first time in a long time Belichick has something to prove. And he will deservedly get as long as he wants to prove it.

Is Kraft disappointed in the way last season played out? Obviously.

Have New England’s drafts been less than stellar over the last half-decade or so? Yup.

Guess who else knows those things? Belichick.

You can bet your last Cadbury Creme Egg that Belichick and his staff have spent plenty of time trying to figure out where past drafts went wrong and what can be done to ensure they aren’t, as the coach himself likes to say, error repeaters in that area.

But to assume – you know what happens when you do that! – that Belichick is one more “down” season away from a pink slip is asinine. If he’s fighting for his future employment right now then so is every person on the planet in every field, taking what-have-you-done-for-me-lately? to the extreme.

And a year-plus after watching Brady walk away does any of us really believe Kraft is going to force another GOAT out of the door to truly tear a dynasty down to the studs and start over?

And replace him with who? Some hot young coach-and-GM combo? In-house promotions?

Look around the league, that usually goes well. [Sarcasm font!]

Talk about a need for suspension of disbelief, good lord.

Actually the popular social media and text acronym with expletive roots seems appropriate here – WTF?

So, apologies if this is an ice-cold take in a sports media world where ya gotta burn hot to get noticed, but Bill Belichick isn’t on the hot seat. He’s not going anywhere just yet. He’s got too much work left to do. It is what it is.

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