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Tedy Bruschi criticizes the Patriots’ head coach: ‘That’s not the Bill Belichick that I know’

Bruschi took exception to Belichick’s statements at the NFL ownership meetings.

New England Patriots Practice Photo by John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Tedy Bruschi took exception to Bill Belichick’s comments at the NFL ownership meeting in Phoenix. Speaking to reporters, Belichick was asked why fans should be optimistic about the 2023 New England Patriots.

His answer?

“The last 25 years.”

Bruschi, who won three Super Bowls under Belichick, was no fan of that statement. Appearing on ESPN’s Get Up on Tuesday morning, he criticized the Patriots’ head coach for what he referred to as off-message behavior.

“That’s my guy who had a little slip right there,” he said, as transcribed by NESN. “I don’t know how many times I’ve been in meetings with Coach Belichick and the very first meeting is, ‘I don’t care about anything in the past.’ We win Super Bowls, ‘last year doesn’t matter.’ Pro Bowls don’t matter, All-Pros don’t matter. ‘Everything you’ve done last year doesn’t matter, fellas. It’s about who we are going forward.’

“This is what the good teams do. Players hold coaches accountable also when they get off-message. Right now, Coach Belichick is off-message. That is something that his players shouldn’t hear — that he is basing some optimism to fans on ‘what I’ve done the last 25 years.’ I don’t know if I’ve ever heard Bill mention something like that in terms of his whole body of work. It was surprising to me. I don’t know what’s going on in that locker room now, but players can hold coaches accountable. I’ve done it with Bill before when he said things postgame or during the week that I did not like and we had discussions in captains meetings or after games or whatever. I’m not in that locker room anymore. I’m just surprised because that’s not the Bill Belichick that I know.”

The Patriots are coming off an 8-9 record, and are faced with plenty of questions about their ability to compete against a stacked AFC East in 2023.

At +6000, New England only has the 23rd best odds of winning the Super Bowl right now, according to DraftKings Sportsbook. The Buffalo Bills (+850; t-4), New York Jets (+1400; t-5) and Miami Dolphins (+2500; t-7) are all given significantly better chances of earning a title this season.