Jason Witten got caught eating hot dog Bill Parcells, thought he would be cut

Bill-Parcells-Saints-interimBill Parcells was known for being one of the toughest coaches to play for during his tenure in the NFL, but Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten recently shared a story about Parcells showing him mercy. Simply put, there was once a time where Witten thought eating a hot dog might get him cut.

On Wednesday, Witten told reporters at an Independence Bowl event that Parcells caught him eating a hot dog during halftime of a preseason game several years ago.

“It was raining, and I had played most of the first half, catching a touchdown pass, and we were beating the Saints pretty good,” Witten said, according to The Shreveport Times. “I figured I was finished at halftime, because starters usually didn’t play that much in preseason games. I walked under the stadium and saw the most beautiful hotdog you’ve ever seen. I dressed it all up with mustard, and ketchup and relish — then I was in mid-bite when coach (Bill) Parcells walked in.

“I felt about this big (motions with fingers). I didn’t figure I’d play another game as a Cowboy.”

[Related: Bill Parcells motivated DeMarcus Ware by ragging on him]

I’m always skeptical of people who put ketchup on their hot dog, but that’s beside the point. Apparently Parcells appreciates the power of a craving, because Witten is still with Dallas and has been one of the most productive tight ends in football throughout his career. Either that, or Witten just got lucky and caught the Big Tuna on a good day.

H/T Pro Football Talk

Bill Parcells: Patriots have spoiled New England with their success

Bill ParcellsIf you think that the Patriots have become a finesse team that can’t win big games anymore, Bill Parcells thinks you’re crazy.

The Big Tuna was among seven elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday. Before learning of his good fortune, he gave an interview to Dan Shaughnessy of The Boston Globe. Parcells reportedly scoffed at the suggestion that the Patriots have become a finesse team.

“No!’’ said Parcells when told the Pats had been labeled a finesse team. “Who says that? They ran the ball good this year. I don’t know what happened in the playoffs, but here’s what I say to you guys in New England: You guys are spoiled. Really, you are. You’ve got to remember how the other half lives. You forgot. I was there for it, so I know. Just remember, you could be like some of these other franchises that you see. You got a couple of ’em in your division.”

When Parcells told people in New England that they have been spoiled, he was probably talking about fans and media alike.

The Pats have won double-digit games in every season since 2003. The only year since then they didn’t make the playoffs was in 2008 when Tom Brady got hurt. They still went 11-5 that year and only missed the postseason because of a tiebreaker. Because of their success, they’re expected to win a Super Bowl every season, but they haven’t since 2004. The fans care more about the team because it is successful, and that leads to a lot of nit-picking.

In the big picture, the Patriots have been wildly successful and spoiled New England, but that doesn’t mean they haven’t had flaws that should be discussed.

One thing we do know is that Tom Brady agrees with Parcells.

Helmet smack to Pro Football Talk
Photo credit: Scott Rovak-US PRESSWIRE

The Vikings are reportedly putting the ‘hard sell’ on Bill Parcells to be their coach

Bill Parcells has all but admitted he would consider coaching the Saints next season if the opportunity is available. He and Sean Payton are close friends, and Parcells would see the move as a personal favor. Now, the question is whether or not the 70-year-old coaching legend would return next season somewhere besides New Orleans. The Vikings are hoping he’ll consider it.

According to the NY Post, Vikings owner Zygi Wilf has been putting the “hard sell” on Parcells to try to convince him to rescue the Vikings. Minnesota finished 3-13 under Leslie Frazier last season and struggled before that with Brad Childress running the show. Wilf has reportedly told Parcells to “name his price” to oversee Minnesota’s football operations and coach the team. In other words, they’re willing to give him complete control.

The Post also says that Parcells wonders if the game has “passed me by.” That’s a fair question. Returning to the sidelines to coach the Saints and taking over the Vikings would be two totally different tasks for the Big Tuna. The Saints are a team that is loaded with Super Bowl talent that simply needs an experienced leader to hold down the fort in Payton’s absence. The Vikings need fixing. At this age, you have to wonder if Parcells still has enough in him to take one of the NFL’s worst teams and turn it into a playoff contender. Better yet, would he even want to?

Photo credit: Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

Bill Parcells hints he would take Saints job if asked: ‘That’s what friends are supposed to be for’

Bill Parcells has been reported as the front runner to be the Saints interim head coach during Sean Payton‘s season-long suspension. Parcells has previously been noncommittal when discussing the rumors, but according to a report Wednesday by Newsday, the 70-year-old coach suggested he would take the gig if he was simply asked by Payton.

“If [Payton] says to me, ‘Bill, I need you to do this,’ that’s what friends are supposed to be for,” Parcells said.

“The thing with this one, it’s a little more personal to me, because this is one of my guys.”

Parcells brought Payton onto his staff as an offensive assistant with the Cowboys in 2003. Payton remained in Dallas until 2006 when he took the Saints job. Payton and Saints GM Mickey Loomis reportedly met with Parcells in Florida on Tuesday, but Parcells said the Saints job wasn’t discussed in detail.

“We literally did not talk about that job at all [Tuesday],” Parcells said. “The only thing he told me is, ‘You’re going to like this situation.’ I know a few of their players, just a couple. I think Sean wanted me to meet Mickey Loomis. I didn’t know him very well.

“They said they’d be in touch.”

As Pro Football Talk suggests, Payton’s consideration of Parcells might be a way of keeping a lock on his job. In Payton’s absence, if the Saints were to win the Super Bowl with a current assistant filling the head coaching role, Payton might find his job in jeopardy. But if the same happens under Parcells’ watch, when Payton returns the Big Tuna just rides off into the sunset with a pat on the back.

Photo credit: Scott Rovak-US PRESSWIRE

Sean Payton has reportedly approached Bill Parcells about coaching the Saints

The Saints currently have a championship-caliber roster but are without a head coach. As you know, Sean Payton has been suspended for an entire year as part of the Saints’ punishment for running a bounty program, effective April 1. New Orleans is one of the best teams in the NFC, but the loss of Payton for a season could set them back significantly. As the team looks for an interim replacement, Payton has reportedly reached out to Bill Parcells.

According to ESPN’s Chris Mortenson, Payton would be interested in having someone like Parcells with Super Bowl experience fill his shoes next season. The two worked together in Dallas from 2003-2005 when Payton served as an assistant coach under Parcells. One source said he believes Parcells would consider it but doubt it will happen.

“As a friend of Sean’s and a football guy, I’m sure he’d consider it but they’re talking about a lot of things,” the source explained. “In the end, I don’t think it would happen. It makes sense but it’s complicated.”

I’m not even sure this makes sense from a football standpoint. Parcells’ resume speaks for itself, but he’s the type of coach that comes to a team and takes over the culture. Parcells has had success with a number of different teams because he’s a tremendous football mind who expects a lot from his players. The Saints are looking for a temporary fill-in, not an authoritarian potential Hall of Famer like Parcells. They already have a good thing going in New Orleans and simply need to weather the storm. I’m not sure that’s a role that makes sense for Parcells.

Photo Credit: Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

Bill Parcells Motivated DeMarcus Ware, Told Him He Would Amount to Nothing

DeMarcus Ware is an absolute monster when it comes to getting after the quarterback. As a rookie in 2005, Ware had an impressive eight sacks. Since then, he has not recorded less than 11 sacks in a season and has played every game of his career. As he chases Michael Strahan’s single-season sack record, Ware said Bill Parcells deserves a lot of the credit for making him into the player he has become.  As you might expect, Parcells’ motivation did not come in the form of coddling.

During a recent podcast interview with Sports Illustrated’s Peter King, Ware said that in 2005 Parcells told him, “You’re going to amount to nothing.”  Ware was the 11th overall pick in the draft, so Parcells and company had to have seen something special in him.  That did not, however, stop the Dallas coach from making his new linebacker fetch him Gatorade — orange Gatorade in particular — and getting pissed if Ware came back with the purple kind.

“Every single day he would stay on you, even if you did something well, he wouldn’t even acknowledge it,” Ware explained. “He would just walk away.”

Ware also recalled Parcells nodding at him after he recorded his first career sack, which he said was enough to show him that his coach approved and believed in him.  DeMarcus has gone on to record 91 more sacks since he got the nod — no pun intended — from Parcells.  Ware said Parcells taught him how to prepare for opponents and the importance of bringing a new game plan every week.  Whatever it was that he said or did to him, I’d say it worked.

Helmet smack to The Dallas Morning News for passing along the interview.

Bill Parcells’ Criteria for Drafting a Quarterback Out of College

Like any other talent evaluator, Bill Parcells has had his share of misses. He’s even admitted to making a few mistakes. But Parcells has also shown an undeniable ability to turn franchises around and build successful teams. Some of that is accomplished through free agency, but most of that is done through the draft.

I’ve long heard about Parcells’ strict criteria for drafting a quarterback out of college. Chad Henne passed the test and so did Pat White, so obviously they were well accomplished collegiately but turned into busts. Whether or not you think the criteria are reasonable is up for debate, but here are his guidelines as he shared during his Draft Confidential on ESPN via Dan Pompei:

1) At least a three-year starter
2) Started at least 30 games
3) Won at least 20 games
4) At least a 2:1 touchdown-to-interception ratio
5) Completion percentage better than 60%
6) Is a senior
7) Is graduating

Andy Dalton and Ricky Stanzi are the only quarterbacks from this year’s class who passed Parcells’ test while Greg McElroy fell three starts short. Dalton went 35th overall to the Bengals while Stanzi was selected 100 picks later by the Chiefs. McElroy (and his hot sister) went 208th overall to the Jets.

As for current NFL quarterbacks, here’s how they stack up:

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