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Fair warning, NFL players: Bill Belichick isn’t really interested in whether you’re having fun.
Now, this isn’t exactly a new revelation; while the New England Patriots have won often and consistently, Belichick has never really looked all that happy while they’re doing it. Regular-season NFL games are like choking down broccoli for Belichick, and the Super Bowl victories are like, oh, broccoli-flavored ice cream.
Which is fine! If you want horseplay, go play baseball, where they while away the infinite number of games in a season by staging three-act plays in the dugout. This is football, son, and football is serious [expletive] business.
And yet, people still keep criticizing Belichick for being too cranky. A few days after former Patriots defensive end Cassius Marsh criticized the Belichick regime for its profound lack of “fun,” Belichick had an apt reply.
“Is it important for you for come up ways for players to feel like they’re enjoying themselves as they’re putting in the work that you ask them to?” a reporter asked during preseason practices this week. While the idea of Belichick getting a pony and a bounce house for his players to let off a little steam in is a delightful image, it ain’t happening.
Belichick, with a scowl that looked like he was being asked to sing “I’m A Little Teapot,” gave an uber-Belichickian response:
“We feel what’s important for us is to win,” he said. “That’s what we’re trying to do.”
It was a direct rejoinder to Marsh’s quotes on the Patriots, though you can imagine that Belichick doesn’t give a used mouthguard about Marsh’s comments. “They don’t have fun there,” Marsh told the San Francisco Chronicle. “There’s nothing fun about it. There’s nothing happy about it. I didn’t enjoy any of my time there, you know what I’m saying? It made me for the first time in my life think about not playing football because I hated it that much.”
You can see how those comments would go over with Belichick. And you can also see the results of his no-fun approach.
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