clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Bill Belichick isn’t worried about the NFL’s helmet rule

If you say so, Bill

Super Bowl LI - New England Patriots v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

“I get up around 7, get out of bed around 9. I don’t worry about nothing, no, cause worrying’s a waste of my time”


-Axl Rose/Bill Belichick (probably)

*Actually, it’s not Bon Jovi, so probably not.

Could’ve rolled with the Mr. Miyagi of our generation Van Wilder’s philosophy on where worrying gets you here too, either way works.

And it’s only fitting that Bill Belichick’s two cents on the NFL’s new we-care-a-lot rule is classic Belichick in two classically Belichickian ways:

  1. It is what it is, and
  2. If you guys do your job like I told you to, everything else works out

Here’s Bill’s actual quotes, courtesy of WEEI:

“From my standpoint, there’s really . . . it’s not a change for us, for our coaching staff,” Belichick said. “We’ve never taught tackling with the crown of your helmet, putting your head down, leaning your body forward in that type of position. I don’t think fundamentally that’s a good position to be in. It’s not effective.

”We’ve always tackled with our head up, eyes open, head back, so we can see what we hit. That’s the only way I’ve ever coached. If we do it that way, we’ll be within the rules.”

Belichick noted the speed and power of the game create a lot of bang-bang plays that will test the ability of a player not to instinctively drop his head.

”Fundamentally, we’ve never taught that in any technique,” he said.

Belichick said the Patriots practice the fundamentals of tackling every day. He added that his team watched 25 plays selected by the league recently to better understand the rule, which bans players from leading with their helmets.

”It doesn’t matter whether I like the rule or don’t like the rule,” Belichick said. “My job is to understand the rule and coach it.”

And here’s your chaser:

“You can X-and-O all you want, but without good fundamentals, you probably won’t have good plays.”

Can confirm. We saw the Super Bowl too.

Either way, the NFL is digging in on this one and refusing to even allow replay review even as NFL VP of Football Operations Troy Vincent kinda-sorta admitted that “incidental contact” with the helmet was going to happen even when players weren’t spearing each other.

Fortunately, as New England can collectively attest, Troy Vincent is a man of his word.