The New England Patriots pulled the curtain back (slightly) on one of their biggest secrets Sunday.
Ahead of their Week 13 matchup with the Los Angeles Chargers, the Patriots released a 10-minute documentary on Ernie Adams, Bill Belichick's high school friend and longtime confidant.
Adams' official title with the Patriots is "Director of Football Research," but what exactly does that mean? Adams explained in his own words in the documentary, which is narrated by Patriots special teamer Matthew Slater.
"The way Bill put it to me when I started was, 'Figure out what you can do to help us win, and do it,' " Adams said.
That vague job description means Adams wears a lot of hats.
"My job since I have been here is to encompass the full range -- coaching, working on the draft, how we're going to handle the salary cap since the cap came in," Adams said.
"I've had my chance to put my fingers in a lot of pies, and hopefully I haven't messed them up."
Adams also has a direct line to Belichick during games, and he makes good use of it. Perhaps the best part of the documentary is the Massachusetts native recalling a pivotal moment in the Patriots' "Snow Bowl" win over the Oakland Raiders during the 2001 playoffs.
With the Patriots needing a stop on third-and-short, Adams flashed back to a 1981 New York Giants game in which defensive coordinator Bill Parcells called a goal-line defense in a similar situation to get a stop on third-and-short.
So, Adams suggested Belichick dial up the same defense against the Raiders, and sure enough, it worked, helping set up the Patriots' 16-13 overtime victory.
Adams' insights have played a key role in the Patriots' success over the past two decades, and this documentary is a good look at what makes him tick.
He still won't share the meaning of "Pink Stripes," though.