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Bill Belichick and Demaryius Thomas can both be right

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It’s business, and it’s personal.

NFL: Preseason-New York Giants at New England Patriots Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

Every day is a good day to make some more coffee in the morning, especially when said morning starts like this:

Which usually means it’s time to quote that timeless classic from Blade that some motherfu people are always trying to ice-skate uphill, except for if you actually put those apparent SHOTS FIRED in the context that Demaryius Thomas said them, they’re...not really that bad?

From NBC Sports Boston, by way of the New York Daily News (I’ll give you 3 guesses who wrote the NYDN article, and you get everything in my wallet if you’re right):

“It was insulting, for sure,” Thomas told the Daily News Wednesday in a candid discussion about his time in Foxborough. “Once I got cut (on August 31), I could have just come here (to the Jets) and not stayed there and re-sign. When they re-signed me, I was thinking that I was good. Two weeks later, I was gone. So, it’s like, ‘Why did I waste my time?’ Because at the end of the day, it was kind of a waste of time for me.”

Cool cool cool, so that takes care of both of the “Sorry, DT said what now?” quotes that everyone’s using for their headlines today. What else ya got?

“They took a chance to bring me in and helped me get healthy,” said Thomas, who was cut by the Texans in the offseason after suffering a torn Achilles in late December. “I always knew I was going to be able to still play… and it would have worked out because I was still learning their offense. Josh McDaniels drafted me. So, I felt like I was cool. But even having conversations with him and couple other people, it was like, ‘You’re going to be okay.’ Two weeks later, AB gets cut… and then they kicked me (to the curb) and shipped me out like I’m just a rookie.”

If we want to get technical about it, they shipped you out *instead* of 2 (two) rookies, but who’s counting?

The timeline checks out, though — the Patriots cut Demaryius Thomas on August 31st, and the immediate word from NFL Network’s Mike Giardi was that both the team and DT were interested in a comeback, presumably after the team could MacGyver an open roster spot for him.

Then just like Demaryius said, almost a week later, and a day before the Patriots almost skunked the Steelers but allowed a field goal (BOOOOOOO!), on September 7th, the Raiders cut the third-fastest player to reach 10,000 receiving yards in NFL history, and, well, you remember the rest. Or maybe you don’t, which, given what went down the next couple weeks, I don’t blame you, I just hope you tipped your bartenders.

Anyway, DT got traded on September 10th, completing Bill Belichick’s PS4 Trophy of trading with every NFL team.

“It was disrespectful to me,” said Thomas, who was dealing with a hamstring strain at the time. “Like, you know, you could trust me and I could trust you. You told me when you cut me at the (final) cut, sit around you’ll bring me back. And I stayed. I could have easily become a Jet once I got cut.… I could have been here the next day after I got released. But I chose to stay.”

“Coach (Belichick) came up to me and was like, ‘Uh, we got too many guys. We can’t get the ball around enough and we’re going to trade you to the Jets,’” Thomas said. “And that was that…. Ain’t no reason to yell. They’ve won championships without me. I was only trying to be a part of something that was going to be good when I was there… They’re doing a hell of a job.”

There’s a little more in the NYDN article, but you get the idea.

Surprisingly, Bill Belichick had something to add to the convo on Thursday, and in what sure seems like a sign of respect, it wasn’t “We only talk about players that are on the team”:

“Look, Demaryius is a great kid,” Belichick said. ”I have a ton of respect for him. He’s very professional, and he did everything we asked him to do. Our circumstances changed a couple of times in that period leading up to when he was traded. I felt like I was always truthful with him, but things changed and therefore, what I said was not the same as what I had said previously. So it is what it is.”

You know Bill’s been in New England a while when he’s calling a 31-year-old All-Pro “kid”.

Back to the last Thomas quote, though, where else have we heard “we got too many guys” over the last week....ah, right, another grizzled vet that got the ax despite being a heavy favorite to make the team that’s since returned to the fold:

Noticing a theme here? When the rules say you can only have X number of players on the team, sometimes you don’t have time to poll the coaches, the fans, the 4th graders, and the barbers.

With that said, if you’re DT, and you do well enough to earn yourself a roster spot after the only team that actually would sign you plays some roster Tetris, and then a bunch of what can only be described as pure craziness that’s completely out of your control results in you getting shipped to one of the league’s slump-busters, of course you’re going to take that personally!

One could even say it’s insulting to be passed over for some local-hype-train rookies and AB when you’ve been nothing but a pro’s pro and a 5-time Pro Bowler and 2-time Second Team All-Pro yourself!

Just because it’s just business doesn’t mean it can’t sting when you held up your end of the bargain and operated in good faith that everything was going to go down according to plan.

Besides, we want these guys to be honest about what they’re really thinking and not just talk in ESPN cliches, right? Looks like what we got here is exactly that. Both ways.