The NFL season will not start until early September, but the New England Patriots’ head coach is already in top form not quite two months removed from his team’s sixth Super Bowl title. Speaking to the media for the first time since the final presser in Atlanta after the Patriots’ win over the L.A. Rams, Belichick did what he does best: say little about the state of the club with free agency basically in the rear-view mirror and the draft one month away.
The big topic at the NFL coaches breakfast, however, was neither of the two but instead the retirement of tight end Rob Gronkowski. So what does Belichick have to say about it? “I already made my comments on Rob. I don’t have anything to add.” Okay, but maybe a little bit more? Losing a talent like Gronkowski has quite the impact on the Patriots after all. “I think my comments on Rob speak for themselves. He’s pretty special in every category,” said New England’s coach.
Belichick also showed little interest in talking about his own future in the NFL. “I’m just going to skip the questions about me, my future and everything else,” the 66-year old said when addressing the topic. His answers also did not fundamentally change the further along his media availability went (interestingly enough, he decided not to sit down at his table at the breakfast as opposed to the other coaches).
“We’ll see how it goes,” Belichick said about Patriots trade acquisition Michael Bennett — an an answer he also used in variations when talking about free agency signings Matt LaCosse, Terrence Brooks, Brandon Bolden and Bruce Ellington, re-signed John Simon, and 2018 rookies Isaiah Wynn, Ryan Izzo and Braxton Berrios (all of which sitting out last year due to injury). The substance levels of the answers were close to zero.
So what can be taken away from the interview session? Little, other than Belichick emphasizing that we are in March aka. more than five months away from the 2019 season. And also that he channeled his inner Gertrude Stein at one point: “The offseason is the offseason.” Well then.