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Aaron Hernandez, Bill Belichick exchanged a ton of text messages

Bill-Belichick-Aaron-HernandezBill Belichick was recently interviewed by Massachusetts detectives who are investigating one of the murders that Aaron Hernandez has been charged with. Belichick, Robert Kraft and several other members of the New England Patriots organization gave statements to authorities. What we found particularly interesting was how often Belichick and Hernandez texted each other in the months leading up to the Odin Lloyd murder.

Jenny Wilson of The Hartford Courant reports that prosecutors turned over 33 pages of text messages that were exchanged between Belichick and his former tight end from February 2013 to May 2013. That’s at least several hundred texts. Odin Lloyd was shot and killed on June 17, 2013.

Considering all of those text messages were exchanged during the offseason, that seems like a ton of communication between a coach and player. Based on some of the stuff we heard when Hernandez was first arrested, we shouldn’t really be surprised.

In March 2013, police were reportedly called to Hernandez’s rental home in Hermosa Beach, Calif. after he allegedly put his fist through a window during an argument with his fiancee Shayanna Jenkins. No charges were filed, but Belichick was supposedly made aware of the incident and “exploded” on Hernandez, telling him that he would be traded or cut if he didn’t shape up.

Prior to the alleged domestic dispute, Hernandez reportedly flew to the NFL Combine in Indianapolis to confide in Belichick that he believed his life was in danger. Belichick allegedly advised Hernandez to rent a safe house and lay low for a while when the former Florida Gator said he was worried a group of gangsters wanted to kill him.

The question is how much did Belichick and the Patriots know. There have been various reports about Hernandez’s alleged paranoia in the months leading up to Lloyd’s murder, and we all know there have been concerns about his off-field behavior since he was in college. In all likelihood, Belichick checked in with Hernandez frequently to make sure he was staying out of trouble. That doesn’t necessarily mean he had any information he should have gone to the police with.

Darrelle Revis: Bill Belichick is a ‘players’ coach’

Darrelle-RevisIsn’t it amazing how fast a player’s tune can change after he switches teams? Two years ago, Darrelle Revis called Bill Belichick a “jerk” and later said he was sticking to it. Of course, that was when Revis was a New York Jet. Now that he is a member of the New England Patriots, it sounds like Revis considers The Hoodie to be a close friend.

“When you’re on the outside looking in when you’re playing with another organization, you look at things totally different,” Revis told reporters Thursday, via CSNNE.com’s Phil Perry. “Especially coming from New York and New England being up here, it’s a lot. You look at things totally different. … Everybody here has accepted me as much as they can to make it feel like home. Even Bill has. I feel fine with it. I’m fine. We’re on good terms.”

That all sounds pretty standard, but some might be surprised to hear Revis describe Belichick as a “players’ coach.”

“One, he’s a great coach,” Revis said. “I really respect him for winning three championships. I really do. Another thing is that I feel like he’s a players’ coach. A lot of people might not say that outside looking in, but we’re with Bill everyday. We hang out with him every day. We’re in the meetings with him every day, so we’re around him all the time. I really feel like he’s a players’ coach.”

That’s not just Revis kissing up. A lot of people take Belichick’s snarky attitude with the media to mean he is tough to work for, and that rarely seems to be the case. He definitely has a no-nonsense attitude, but there’s a reason so many players respect him. He hates talking to reporters. He doesn’t hate coaching.

H/T Pro Football Talk

Bill Belichick on missing coaches’ photo: ‘They can photoshop me in there’

NFL-head-coaches-photo

Every NFL head coach posed for a photo together at the annual head coaches meetings in Orlando on Monday with the exception of one. We’ll give you one guess who didn’t show up.

On Tuesday, Bill Belichick was asked why he was the only one of 32 current NFL head coaches who chose not to partake. He simply responded that “they can photoshop me in there” if they want. Naturally, the internet didn’t need to be told twice. The photoshops began rolling in almost immediately, with most of them featuring Belichick in his infamous pirate attire.

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Bill Belichick works out with girlfriend Linda Holliday in trademark hoodie

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When I think of Bill Belichick’s infamous hooded sweatshirt as it pertains to his and Linda Holliday’s relationship, I like to think it is something the three-time Super Bowl champion coach’s girlfriend only lets him wear during games. I envision a closet full of hoodies with the sleeves cut off and Holliday saying something like this about them.

“Don’t put any of those things NEAR my clothes!”

Maybe I’m wrong. Belichick also wears the trademark hoodie when he works out. On Monday, Holliday posted a photo of her and her boo hitting the weights. Belichick was in midseason form with his wardrobe selection.

Now that I think of it, Linda did once rock a “Ms. Belichick” jersey on the sideline during a game. Belichick was wearing the hoodie when she did that. She must dig it.

H/T SI Hot Clicks

Michael Lombardi brings Browns draft guide to Combine with Bill Belichick

Michael-Lombardi-Browns-notebook

The New England Patriots hired former Cleveland Browns general manager Michael Lombardi as an assistant to the coaching staff last week. Lombardi, who was Bill Belichick’s director of player personnel with the Browns in the 1990s, is expected to help the Pats evaluate talent and build their roster. Is he using the same strategy he would have used in Cleveland?

Cameras spotted Lombardi thumbing through a guide at the NFL Scouting Combine on Monday that had the Browns logo on it. He was sitting next to Belichick at the time and they were presumably discussing draft strategy.

What does this mean? Absolutely nothing, as Lombardi has probably been compiling notes for months and wasn’t about to copy them over into a new notebook strictly because he got a new job. That said, there are a lot of Patriots fans who would probably like to see him dispose of that book. Anything that has been going on in Cleveland for the past several years hasn’t worked.

Photo via Twitter/Ryan Van Bibber

Bill Belichick rips Wes Welker over hit on Aqib Talib

Aqib Talib Wes WelkerOne of the most important plays of the AFC Championship Game on Sunday came in the first quarter when Denver Broncos wide receiver Wes Welker collided with New England Patriots cornerback Aqib Talib. Welker cracked Talib on a pass over the middle that was intended for Demaryius Thomas. Talib left the game and did not return.

[WATCH: Wes Welker drills Aqib Talib over the middle]

Many questioned the hit and wondered if it was an illegal pick by Welker, but replays showed that Welker actually hit Talib right at the moment the ball hit Thomas’ hands. Bill Belichick did not see it that way, and he uncharacteristically blasted Welker for the play on Monday morning.

“That was a deliberate play by the receiver to take out Aqib,” Belichick said, via Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald. “(Welker made) no attempt to get open. One of the worst plays I’ve seen. I’ll let the league handle discipline on that play. … That’s one of the worst plays I’ve seen.”

As Howe noted, Belichick’s comments came during his opening statements and not in response to a question from a reporter. It’s extremely rare for the Pats coach to talk like that about a specific play or player, so you know he had to have been steaming about it.

Talib held Thomas to just four catches and 41 yards in New England’s 34-31 comeback win over the Broncos in Week 12. After he left Sunday’s game, Thomas abused Patriots cornerback Alfonzo Dennard and ended up with seven catches for 134 yards and a touchdown. The loss of Talib was obviously huge for New England’s defense.

As for Welker and Belichick, it is no secret that their relationship deteriorated quickly over the course of the 2012 season. Belichick tried to phase Welker out by starting Julian Edelman over him at the beginning of the season, but injuries resulted in Welker having another monster year. Had the play with Talib involved a different former Patriot, Belichick probably would not have had such a strong reaction.

Peyton Manning: Bill Belichick will go down as greatest NFL coach ever

Bill-Belichick-hoodiePeyton Manning has struggled to get the best of Bill Belichick throughout his career. When facing Belichick and Tom Brady, Manning is a combined 4-10 between the regular season and playoffs. Why has Manning had such a tough time? If you asked him, he’d tell you it’s because Belichick is the greatest NFL coach of all time.

“Coach Belichick is the best coach that I’ve ever competed against,” Manning told reporters on Wednesday, as noted by Patrick Saunders of The Denver Post. “I think it’s safe to say that he’ll go down as the greatest NFL coach of all time. The teams that he’s coach that I’ve competed against have always been well-coached, always been prepared and always played hard for 60 minutes.

“I played against him when he was a defensive coordinator with the Jets and then as the head coach in New England. Those things jump out, and to me that speaks to his coaching.”

Belichick is certainly going to be remembered as one of the best coaches in NFL history, but another Super Bowl ring would put him very close to the top of the pyramid. Many will say that Vince Lombardi can never be removed from his spot at the top. Chuck Knoll is the only NFL coach with four Super Bowl rings and Bill Walsh and Joe Gibbs are the only others with three. We also can’t forget about legends like Paul Brown.

On Sunday, Manning will be responsible for either cementing Belichick’s place in history or presenting him with another obstacle to overcome.