Though the Lawrence Eagle-Tribune’s Bill Burt has been the subject of ridicule in this space previously, full credit where due in this instance : he’s found someone very eager to badmouth Don Shula.

Ed Weisacosky played six seasons in the NFL, three with the Dolphins, including Shula™s first season there in 1970, when the Dolphins had to pay a first-round pick for tampering with him while he was still coach of the Baltimore Colts.

œI was never a big Don Shula fan, said Weisacosky, a 6-foot, 228-pound linebacker. œI don™t think I was treated fairly by him and the Dolphins.

I found a great source here. He said he vaguely remembered the 52-0 pounding by Shula™s Dolphins.

œUsually scores like that one, you put in the reserves, said Weisacosky. œBut I recall he waited too long to do that. I think he wanted to make sure he beat us ¦ bad. Those kinds of things usually bite you back some day.

Weisacosky™s Pats were 6-8 and 3-11 in his two seasons here. But, he says, they were really were the happiest years of his NFL career, which ended just after the ˜72 season.

œThe Patriots really treated the players well. I™ll never forget that, said Weisacosky. œI played for the Giants and Dolphins before that, but the Patriots went out of the way to make sure we were happy.

He said he lived in southeaster Mass., but couldn™t recall the town other than it was œ30 minutes from Boston.

His first wife, Nancy, died of brain cancer in 1978. After settling in as a sheriff he met his second wife, Kim.

As crazy as this sounds, she is a big Patriots fan, especially this season.

œShe wasn™t a football fan when I met her, but she started hanging around me while I™d watch some games, and I was usually pulling for the Patriots, said Weisacosky. œNow she can™t get enough of football and the Patriots. When they are on TV, which is all of the time lately, we™re watching. I guess I always stayed a Patriots fan.

As for the Dolphins, Weisacosky is hoping the Patriots match their undefeated season. In fact, he expects it to happen.

œDon Shula should know better than to say those things about the Belichick and the Patriots, said Weisacosky. œIt sounds like sour grapes to me.

As for other Patriots memories, Weisacosky said he remembers Jim Plunkett being one tough dude.

œThe guy got killed in the pocket, he said. œI felt bad for him. But I saw him in practice. You could see he was a good quarterback. We just couldn™t protect him.