If that’s how the Bills fan above looked while watching the Patriots score at will on Buffalo last night, imagine, if you will, his reaction to a column by the Boston Globe’s Christopher L. Gasper, gauging the Hooded Casanova’s chances of winning NFL Coach Of The Year honors?
Like one of Belichick’s game plans, his candidacy is more complicated. No one doubts his coaching credentials. He is this millennium’s Vince Lombardi, a brilliant tactician and master motivator. However, Belichick, who won the award in 2003, the Patriots’ second Super Bowl championship season, could be penalized for his team’s past success and a signal-stealing scandal that galvanized the Patriots but tarnished his patina of genius.
At least one former winner of the award, Jim Fassel, who was named Coach of the Year in 1997 after he guided the Giants to a 10-5-1 mark following a six-win season, thinks Belichick deserves the honor.
“The job Bill has done, he’d get my vote because you can’t ignore the fact that this could go down as the best team in the history of football,” said Fassel, who does not have a vote for the award. “I’m one with the Spygate where OK, they paid the fine and that didn’t have anything to do, I don’t think, with this year.”
Fassel wouldn’t change his mind even if the Patriots lose a game.
“How many teams have gone 15-1?” he said. “You’re in a very elite class when you talk 15-1. At the end of the day, I’d vote for who I thought had done the best job, and right now he has.”
Who need that an unemployed Jim Fassel had a vote? Not to rag on Gasper too much, but if the opinions of jobless members of the NFL coaching fraternity are relevant to this discussion, can somebody please email Buddy Ryan?