Patriots

Bill Belichick: Tom Brady 'iconic' but Patriots QB's future not up to coach alone

Bill Belichick: Tom Brady 'iconic' but Patriots QB's future not up to coach alone

FOXBORO — Bill Belichick reiterated it multiple times. He didn't want to discuss the future. Still, the questions came. 

During his end-of-the-season press conference on Sunday morning at Gillette Stadium, he was lobbed queries about Tom Brady's future. He deflected questions about his own future.

Almost 10 minutes into his back-and-forth, though, he provided some insight on the mechanics involved in a decision on Brady's whereabouts for 2020. 

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"Everybody's situation on the team is different," Belichick said. "There are no two that are exactly the same. But the future is the future for all of them, just as it is for Tom and anyone else you want to bring up.

"Certainly Tom is an iconic figure in this organization. Nobody respects Tom more than I do. I respect all the other players and all the other coaches in this organization, too. I think that everybody is an important part of it.

"I want to give the proper attention and communication and detail and thought into my input into those decisions. But any decisions made, it's not an individual decision. There are other people involved. There has to be some type of communication, understanding, agreement, whatever you want to call it. 

"That's not a one-way street. I hope you can understand that. Not one person is going to decide what everyone else is going to do when players aren't under contract. We have a lot of players that aren't under contract."

Brady's input, obviously, will matter. Does he want to be back in New England? If so, then what will it require in terms of years and dollars to keep him there?

How does the structure in place with the Patriots — is Josh McDaniels around or no? — impact his decision one way or the other?

Ownership's input, obviously, will matter. Belichick and Robert Kraft clearly were comfortable going into the 2019 season with Brady on a one-year deal. Brady is now scheduled to hit unrestricted free agency for the first time in his career.

Could the Kraft family let their face of the franchise for the last two decades walk? What's the number that would lead them to determine it's time to move on?

There's some calculus there — where the lines blur between business decision and football decision, yet where lines will be drawn — that's next to impossible to decipher at this point.

The only certainty at the moment, as it pertains to Brady's future, is that there is uncertainty. 

Rob Gronkowski set to compete in virtual beer pong tournament

Rob Gronkowski set to compete in virtual beer pong tournament

Who knew virtual beer pong was a thing? 

Former New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski apparently is set to compete in a virtual beer pong tournament hosted by Post Malone to raise money for coronavirus relief efforts, according to TMZ Sports. The tournament will be live-streamed on the @ballinacup Instagram over eight days and the winners will receive a trophy and wrestling belts. 

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Gronkowski will be partnered with his girlfriend Camille Kostek, and they aren't the only familiar faces in the tournament. Former Patriots wide receiver Danny Amendola and former Boston Bruins forward Tyler Seguin also will compete in the competition. 

The first round kicks off on Friday with Gronkowski and Kostek taking on Atlanta Braves shortstop Dansby Swanson and USWNT star Mallory Pugh. Amendola will take on Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce on Saturday and Seguin will take on New York Mets pitcher Marcus Stroman on Monday, April 6. 

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It's no surprise Gronkowski signed up to compete in this tournament -- he loves to party after all. 

This definitely is something out of the ordinary, but it should be pretty comical to watch Gronkowski, Amendola and Seguin compete to see who the king of beer pong is. 

 

Patriots have dominated this category since turn of the century

Patriots have dominated this category since turn of the century

The New England Patriots have been an unstoppable force over the course of the past two decades. The team has won six Super Bowls, 17 division titles, and hasn't logged a losing season this century.

One of the reasons for their success? They have been insanely good in one-possession games.

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According to Boston Sports Info (@BostonSportsInf), the Patriots have the best winning percentage in one-score games since the turn of the century. They are one of just two teams that have won greater than 60 percent of those contests. Here's a look at the numbers:

While several teams have more wins than the Patriots in these contests, it's still remarkable that the team has won two-thirds of their one-score games in the Tom Brady/Bill Belichick era. It takes great decision-making on the parts of players and coaches to maintain such a strong record.

With Brady no longer on the Patriots, It looks like we're going to figure out just how much he has mattered to the Patriots' ability to win close games. Jarrett Stidham and Brian Hoyer are the two quarterback options on the roster after Cody Kessler was released on Thursday, so Belichick will have his work cut out for him with either option.

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Meanwhile, Brady's impact on the Buccaneers may be notable depending on how much they improve in this area. The Bucs have the third-worst winning percentage of the century in one-possession games, coming in at 40.2 percent. They have the second-most losses overall with 98.

Last season, the Bucs were 3-6 in nine one-score games with Jameis Winston at the helm. If Brady can help to improve upon that record by making fewer late-game mistakes than the turnover-prone Winston did, then the Bucs may have a chance to progress well as an overall team.

Either way, we'll soon see how Brady's presence impacts the Bucs and if the Patriots can continue their winning ways in close contests.