A transcript of a segment of the Mike Felger show on ESPN Boston yesterday afternoon, regarding the time 5 years ago when Bill Belichick made the decision to stick with Tom Brady even after Bledsoe was ready to play again. Borges claims he felt Belichick made the right decision, but didn’t like how it was handled:
Borges: What I was up in arms about was the fact that he LIED to the guy about what the situation was gonna be in terms of what he had to do to win his job back.
Felger: OK, let me ask you about that. Why do we care so much that a football coach lies? What’s the diff? He’s a football coach!
Borges: Well, because I think if you want your players, to…I just don’t think it’s a smart way to deal with the players. If you want to lie to me, fine, they make a living doing that. They want to lie to you, they lie to you everyday.
Felger: How did Belichick lie? What did he say to Drew?
Borges: What Bledsoe said to him at the original meeting, when he was cleared to practice, and I know this firsthand, for a lot of reasons,
Felger: Why…you were sitting there on the couch?
Borges: I PREPARED THE GUY TO GO MEET HIM! Quite frankly!
Felger: Hold on…so you talked…Bledsoe called you up and said “Ron, I’m about to go talk to Belichick, help me out”
Borges: He said, you know, how’s this, what’s the, how do you think this is likely to go down? And I told him, which turned out to be exactly what it was. I said, when he says to you, uh, you’re going to have to show in practice, which is, of course what he said, you need to ask him how long you have…
Felger: Meaning what? What do you mean how long you have?
Borges: In other words, Are you going to look for a week, and then make a decision, do I have two weeks? Do I have 10 weeks? How long do I have? And according to the way that…it was related back to me what happened in that meeting, it was a question he didn’t anticipate. And you know how…you’ve seen Belichick when he doesn’t…uh…know what’s coming…
Felger: Well, he’s not really quick with the…retorts.
Borges: Right, and his response was ‘as long as you need’, Well, you know, once you say that, I think, I have as long as I need.
Felger: If I’m a professional athlete, certainly in the NFL, which has as cutthroat no-guarantee contracts, obviously we know the deal in the NFL, I don’t…I don’t buy what anyone says to me. There’s no such thing as lying.
Borges: That’s why you’re not a player in the NFL.
Then that morphed into a conversation about how players do what their coaches tell them, even when they know it isn’t going to work.
We knew that Bledsoe was a favorite of many of the media members. It was rumored that he was the source of many of the “inside” stories that would come out of the Patriots organization. Now we have Borges admitting…no, BRAGGING that the Patriots quarterback called him up to ask him advice about how to handle a confrontation with his head coach.
Maybe Drew recalled Borges’ confrontation with Pete Carroll a couple years earlier and thought, “Hmmm, now that’s a guy I’m going to turn to when I need some advice for how to best navigate a delicate situation with my coach.”
It’s a story that doesn’t reflect well on either Bledsoe or Borges. So much for the objectivity of the press, huh?
Then a little later, Belichick’s place in the history of the game came up:
Caller: …he wins one more ring, he’s the best coach in the history of the NFL. No one could argue that.
Felger: Ron, could you argue that?
Borges: Oh, I’m sure I could find a way.
Felger: You don’t think he’s one of the great coaches of all time?
Borges: I didn’t say that! There you go…you got no ears on your head, either!
Felger: Question mark. I didn’t accuse, I asked…I said do you think…do you not think he’s one of the greatest coaches of all time?
Borges: He’s one of the great coaches of all time.
Felger: That’s a big admission, right there Ron.
Borges: It’s NOT. I always say he’s a good coach. Doesn’t mean he’s not a lousy person.
Kevin Winter: You’ve said it before about inducting him if it ever happens…
Borges: Yeah, I’m the guy who’s got to make the speech. And it will be a helluva speech.
Well, that’s nice of Ron. He does manage to sneak the “lousy person” line in there even when admitting that the guy is one of the best coaches in the history of the NFL. I’m sure all the other coaches in the Hall are great people. Ron’s speech should really be a “helluva” speech…I wonder how many snide comments about the type of person Borges believes Belichick to be will be mixed in with all his career accomplishments.