Week Log: Belichick, On His Terms

Yes, I hurled all manner of verbal abuse at my TV on Sunday night and, yes, my wife walked out on me for the last 13 seconds. In fact, she got so flustered that she forgot to take our youngest with her, leaving him to ask to no one in particular, “Why is daddy so mad?” But four days of separation have now brought me to an appreciation of Bill Belichick’s fourth-and-two call.

Maybe I’m just one of those contrarians Bruce spoke of yesterday, and maybe I like it when radio pundits tell me I’m an idiot. I actually find it kind of validating. Look, that game was going to have its Armageddon. Whether the ball was in the Pats’ hands or the Colts’, the forces of good and evil were going to engage in a winner-take-all play before the final gun. Belichick merely forced its hand early and on his terms, sort of like Macaulay Culkin did to the Wet Bandits in Home Alone. Hey, I said I have young kids.

Anyway, we’ve heard from the columnists all week; now it’s time for the bloggers. Patriots Daily declares Bill Belichick an asset to the cause of winning. Pats Chowder loved going for the jugular rather than playing not to lose. Blaug is happy he has a coach with big marbles and hopes Belichick rolls them out again. Patriots Gab is looking for some law of unintended consequences payback down the road.

Green Street catches up with Doc Rivers, who says good coaching means never saying you’re sorry. Thanks For Playing loves the way Belichick is handling the fallout. And, in one of the most interesting takes yet, Fire Brand of the American League cuts over their baseball boundaries and triumphs Bob Kraft for building a culture that fosters creative thought without fear of reprisal.

Pats Pulpit is among an arguable majority who think the call was wrong but they’re outraged that anyone would flip the arrogance card at Belichick. Surviving Grady says there’s a greater power that moves even the great Belichick around like a pawn on the chessboard. The Patriot Act suggests that the statistical support in favor of Belichick’s decision would render the punt obsolete. Fenway Pastoral opines that punting is an antiquated concept with no place in today’s game.

Forward march. The NYJ are in town this week, and ESPN Boston’s Mike Reiss has Jets CB Darrelle Revis feeling dissed and insisting he single-handedly shut down Randy Moss in Week 2. So, you should be able to do it again then, right Darrelle? Key injuries to the Jets and now the Dolphins lead Extra Points to wonder if the AFC East already belongs to the Patriots. The Rap Sheet checks in with Shawn Springs and Junior Seau, who have been hard to find of late.

It Is What It Is has Kevin Faulk mastering the art of blitz pickup, while Jeff Howe reveals how center Dan Koppen keeps the Pats’ offense greased.

NCAAF

The BC Eagles were involved in a controversial fourth down of their own last weekend, but they were on the winning end of both the play and the game, holding on to a 14-10 win over Virginia. After watching this one, BC Interruption wants those two hours of their lives back. BC Blog has this Saturday’s game against North Carolina a catharsis for the seniors who will be playing the last home game of their collegiate careers. Eagle in Atlanta says QB David Shinskie can’t afford any more rookie mistakes against the Tarheel’s stingy defense. And CBNB says the Eagles should be thankful for the return of some stability this Thanksgiving.

The View From Section X attempts to navigate the complexities of BC’s bowl chances. Sox & Dawgs have UConn on the brink of bowl eligibility and needing a win against the Fighting Irish this Saturday. The Harvard Crimson have Harvard taking no chances in their loss against Penn last Saturday that has left them with slim chance for another Ivy League title.

And no, there’s no playoff picture in Amhurst, only a prescient fourth down late in Saturday’s game where Minutemen coach Kevin Morris chose to punt – and lost. UMass Football Blog defends the call because, well, if they failed the game was over. So how did that work out? Show some big marbles and go for it next time, will ya?

Bruins

We’ve hit the 20-game milestone as The Hockey Blog Adventure takes another ten-game temperature reading of the B’s. Not to spoil it, but the mercury is low. The Old Bruins Fan is getting what he wanted all along – a good dose of adversity. Now he’s worried that it may kill them before it makes them stronger.

Despite a three-game losing streak, View From 311 is looking for the B’s to gel on the upcoming four-game road trip. Something’s Bruin says the B’s have looked pretty ugly without their two best forwards on the ice. Kathryn Tappen also thinks it hasn’t been pretty without Marc Savard who was, without ever playing, the best thing to happen to the B’s in the last three games.

The Bear Cave says Monday’s loss to the Islanders exemplifies both the B’s weak power play and strong penalty-kill.

Would you trade Brad Boyes for Dennis Wideman if you could do it all over again? That’s what Stanley Cup of Chowder wants to know in the first of their newest feature, so tell ‘em.

Celtics

The C’s were out-rebounded throughout most of last night but still got past the Golden State Warriors at TD Garden to snap their own losing streak of two. Red’s Army refuses to feel good about this win. Celtics Stuff Live thinks of the C’s as a bushel of corn: they look worthless now but should ferment into a fine bottle of JD by spring.

Celtics Hub has Doc Rivers trying to control Rasheed’s treys, which aren’t putting enough points on the board. Evans Clinchy has Marquis Daniels making the transition from stat-builder to team contributor. Celtics Blog says the length and size of Andres Nocione’s contract would make him an ill fit in Boston. Celtics 17 plays killjoy with our fantasy of seeing Nocione in green.

MLB Hot Stove

El Guapo’s Ghost says Roy Halladay may be just what NESN needs. Of course, the Sox will have to compete with their evil cousins down by the river, who, as usual, are always in the market for another eight-figure ace. Toeing The Rubber doesn’t care how the Jason Bay saga ends so long as it ends soon, while Peter’s Red Sox Forever hopes Bay will be back. The Bottom Line thinks Billy Wagner may be better off somewhere else, but he could add bullpen depth if his price is right. Boston Dirt Dogs sees a cold Hot Stove ahead, while Fenway West tells you why the Sox may be sitting out this offseason.

Tom Caron thinks that trade bait – errrr . . . prospect – Casey Kelly is best utilized as a full-time pitcher.

And finally, our Subway Squawking New York friends visit the finer side of Manhattan where they learn you can buy World Series rings but trivia contests are not for sale.

Like the rest of the 21st Century, I’m gradually assuming technology’s tools. Hey, I don’t have a Blackberry yet but I now have a Twitter. Follow me @BobEks for Week Log publishing alerts and the occasional cancellation notice when I can’t shake The Man and do my thing. See you on Twitter, or right back here next Thursday afternoon.

  • Angry Old Bastard

    nice work,Bob…good to hear from the other side……the “never wrong-always right” second guessers had their say…..

  • Tony

    The 4th and 2 decision was not the problem….it was everything the Pats did in that fourth quarter before the 4th and 2 decision. Too conservative on both sides of the ball once they went ahead 31-14. Next time, I’m sure they’ll go for the jugular much earlier in the game, because with Manning and the Colts, especially with a typically subservient-to-Bill Polian officiating crew working an Indy home game, you can never have a big enough lead to take your foot off the gas pedal.

    • Chris

      If the Pats are ever up 31-14 again, do you think that anyone with a brain is going to knock BB for going for more points? The ‘running-up-the-score’ crowd was neutered by the outcome of Sunday’s game.

      • Classless

        Exactly. Which is why we’ll see Brady throwing deep into any game they’re up the rest of the year.

  • http://subwaysquawkers.blogspot.com Lisa from Subway Squawkers

    Bob, thanks for the shoutout about my walk to the bad side of town – aka a New York City Red Sox bar. Very funny!