Patriots

Boston coaches explain what makes Bill Belichick, Patriots successful

Boston coaches explain what makes Bill Belichick, Patriots successful

Bill Belichick has enjoyed unprecedented success as head coach of the New England Patriots for the last two decades, leading his team to six Super Bowl titles in nine appearances over that span.

It's the kind of success Belichick's fellow Boston coaches can only dream of accomplishing. Red Sox manager Alex Cora, Celtics head coach Brad Stevens, and Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy can't help but marvel at the 67-year-old's ability to get his teams to buy in each and every season.

The trio appeared on "Dale & Keefe" as part of the WEEI/NESN Jimmy Fund Radio-Telethon on Wednesday to discuss what makes Belichick and the Patriots so great.

Stevens led off by talking about Belichick's squad seemingly always being on the same page.

“The thing that stands out when you go over and watch the Patriots do workouts and sit in meetings and sit in film is they are on one page. They are in one direction. His message, although has thousands of complexities within each scheme defensively and offensively, his message is concise. It’s ultimately not only well delivered, but well received. You can tell that thing is a juggernaut. That is a train moving in one direction. They know what they need to do to be successful. I don’t think it’s brain surgery the way that I have seen it from up and close and afar is they don’t beat themselves. There are a lot of things in a football game that ultimately lead to that and they are the best at them.”

Cassidy noted the culture that has been established in Foxboro since the day Belichick took over as Patriots head coach.

“He has a 53 minimum players and then the practice squad and we’re dealing with 12-22, so a little bit easier for us to probably work our way around the room and get our message individually 1-on-1. The Patriots have been the best at establishing culture — this is the way we’re doing it. We’re going to get it right and if you’re not on board that is fine, we’ll get someone else. It’s worked for them very well.

"Credit to Bill and credit to ownership. It starts at the top and the players have bought into that direction. We have it with (Patrice) Bergeron and (Zdeno) Chara. We’re very lucky. I am one of the most fortunate guys in the National Hockey League to coach true pros like that. Coming in at a young age I appreciate that. I am sure Brad has his guys that he leans on and Alex the same. Everyone is blessed or not of establishing that culture and have guys that will follow it. He’s done a great job — him and Tom (Brady) obviously, the two faces of the franchise. It has been terrific."

Cora raved about the Patriots' discipline and noted that on the rare occasion they do lose, it usually isn't due to silly mistakes.

“For me it is the preparation and the way they go about it on Sundays. It’s just like, ‘We’re going to play this way and if you beat us, you beat us. We didn’t beat ourselves.’ You can go back to yesterday -- man on second no outs and we had a mistake running the bases. That’s on us. We were undisciplined on that play and probably cost us the game. With them, I have been watching this team for 5-6 years, it’s like, 'Wow' at how precise they are. It’s almost perfect. When they lose a game it’s not because they were sloppy or undisciplined, it’s just the other team that Sunday was just better than (them).”

Cora, Stevens, and Cassidy have done a fine job with their respective teams, but there's no doubt Belichick has set the standard high for them and everyone else who coaches one of Boston's storied franchises.

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NFL odds Week 3: Early spread for Patriots vs. Jets, all other games

NFL odds Week 3: Early spread for Patriots vs. Jets, all other games

The New England Patriots will be favored by more than two touchdowns for the second consecutive game when they take on the New York Jets in Week 3.

The Patriots destroyed the Miami Dolphins on the road Sunday in a 43-0 Week 2 win. New England's defense had seven sacks and four interceptions, while the offense was bolstered by the debut of newly signed wide receiver Antonio Brown. The 31-year-old veteran caught four passes from Tom Brady, tallying 56 receiving yards and one touchdown.

Oddsmakers pegged the Patriots as 18.5-point favorites against the Dolphins, and the defending Super Bowl champions easily covered the spread. With the Pats ready to host the Jets on Sunday afternoon at Gillette Stadium, oddsmakers again are making New England a massive favorite entering Week 3. The Jets also are expected to start backup quarterback Trevor Siemian against the Patriots because starter Sam Darnold is battling mono.

Here are the early spreads for every Week 3 game (via the Westgate Superbook):

The most notable spread on that list is the Dallas Cowboys being favored by 20.5-points over the Dolphins. The Cowboys are 2-0, and their high-powered offense led by Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott should easily be able to move the ball against a Dolphins defense that's given up 102 points over the first two weeks of the season.

The Dolphins have played so poorly that the Westgate Superbook is taking prop bets on them to finish the season 0-16 (the book also has odds on the Patriots going 16-0).

Security guard has priceless reaction to seeing Tom Brady in Miami>>>

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Stephen Gostkowski on tough outing vs. Dolphins: 'Today just sucked'

Stephen Gostkowski on tough outing vs. Dolphins: 'Today just sucked'

The New England Patriots dominated virtually every aspect of the game on Sunday afternoon in their 43-0 victory against the Miami Dolphins. However, not everything was perfect for the team in the massive win.

Kicker Stephen Gostkowski struggled badly against the Dolphins. The long-time Patriots kicker missed two extra points and a 48-yard field goal. The five missed points didn't matter in this game, but they could matter in a game down the line.

That said, Gostkowski owned his mistakes after the game and said that Sunday just wasn't his day.

"I stink today," Gostkowski said to Kevin Duffy of The Boston Herald. "Not my day. It was pretty terrible on my part. Today just sucked."

Gostkowski will have to hope that today's performance doesn't carryover moving forward, but he doesn't have a lot to worry about. He has posted some clunkers over the course of his career, but he has converted at least 84 percent of his field goals while missing just six PATs over the course of the past seven seasons. He should get back on the right track moving forward.

Kickers can often struggle to start the season if they aren't in rhythm. And even former Patriots kicker and one of the best in NFL history, Adam Vinatieri, may consider retirement after a rocky start for the Indianapolis Colts. But so long as Gostkowski doesn't let one bad game rattle him, the Patriots aren't likely to have a kicker conundrum anytime soon.

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