“Bill Belichick: A Football Life,” a two-hour documentary chronicling the exploits of New England’s 3-time Super Bowl champion head coach premieres September 15 on the NFL Network. While the film doesn’t seem to delve into Belichick’s knack for wrecking marriages with Bon Jovi laminates or attempts at videotape espionage, it’s a tad meatier than the fluff piece we might expect, as the Boston Globe’s Chad Finn describes.
The film emphasizes what seems to be an uncanny knack for prescience. Belichick foreshadows one reason for this team’s eventual downfall during a coaches’ meeting before an early-season game. “If you take [Randy] Moss away on deep part of the field and get down low on [Wes] Welker, we’re done. We’re done. We can’t run the ball. We can’t throw it to anybody else. We’re done.’’ He notes during a casual conversation that he thinks the Jets will play hard for their blustery new coach, Rex Ryan. And it cannot be coincidence that he’s shown chatting amicably with then-Bengals receiver Chad Ochocinco before a preseason game. “We’re double-covering you,’’ Belichick says, “so you can take the rest of the night off.’’
The most honest reasons for Belichick’s willingness to give NFL Films access are evident not in New England but New York. During a Week 2 visit to Giants Stadium to play the Jets, Belichick gives the three-person crew that followed him a tour of the stadium where he made his coaching name as the Giants’ defensive coordinator in the ’80s. It was his last visit to Giants Stadium as a coach – it was demolished after the season – and the revisiting of his roots puts him in an anecdotal mood. He looks at linebacker Lawrence Taylor’s locker and chuckles as he recalls when a fellow coach’s daughter found $75,000 in uncashed checks in the reckless superstar’s box of mail. He points out where each coach used to sit. He talks about beating Bill Parcells at racquetball “probably more than he beat me. And of course, as soon as it was over, he’d light into like four cigarettes.’’ You could swear you heard him chortle.