Monday, February 07, 2005

He's Just a Bill. Yes, He's Only a Bill

First, congratulations to Bill Belichick on winning his third Superbowl. His team, while as boring as he was during his tenure with the Browns, knows how to win and does just that.

That said, I was surprised to find Cris Collinsworth even mentioning that Bill coached in Cleveland and what a disaster that was. But he did, saying that people in Cleveland must be scratching their heads at the success he's having now.

Well, this expatriate (no pun intended) isn't scratching his head about Bill's success now. What pretty much all of greater Cleveland was scratching their head about was his coaching in Cleveland. With hindsight a plenty, these days most Clevelanders will say they wanted Bill Cowher, but at the time sentiment was split between Cowher and Belichick as choices for head coach, because Bill B. was young and was thought to be something of a defensive genius. And yet his some of his football moves with Cleveland just didn't make sense.

History has proven him more right than wrong about Bernie Kosar's diminishing skills (which was more a PR disaster than a football disaster.) But "Metcalf up the middle" became literally a running joke in Cleveland, mocking Belichick's penchant for trying to run the slight Eric Metcalf up the gut, especially when the more durable Leroy Hoard was available for such duty. But looking back at those times, one must conclude that Belichick was trying to win with, let's face it, a less than stellar football cast.

The teams of Art "The Great Satan" Modell while in Cleveland drafted horrendously. (It must be something in Lake Erie, because Carmen Policy didn't do any better.) The unsung hero in Boston is the Patriots' general manager (so unsung, in fact, that I have forgotten his name.) But even there, Bill had a hand. In much of a similar replay to Cleveland, Bill benched the popular Drew Bledsoe for the boring, workmanlike Tom Brady, who, to paraphrase Al Davis, just wins, baby.

So Belichick has vindication (if he wants it,) and yet another Superbowl. It's nice to see that somebody got the Belichick we'd hoped we'd get all along. And, yes, his teams are still boring. But I'll take boring and winning every day and especially twice on Sunday.

No comments: