Home Sports SVP’s One Big Thing: After Week 18, Belichick’s New England exit looms

SVP’s One Big Thing: After Week 18, Belichick’s New England exit looms

SVP’s One Big Thing: After Week 18, Belichick’s New England exit looms


The Hollywood ending in sports is exceptionally rare — the hero walking off a winner with confetti showering them as they exit the stage. More often it’s “No Country For Old Men” or “The Sopranos.” Dip to black. It’s over. Doesn’t matter if you were the proverbial main character or not.

Tom Brady is the most decorated player in the history of the game — inarguably, the greatest New England Patriot. His last play in their uniform was a pick-six against the Titans in a wild-card loss on a field where so many incredible moments went his way.

To the same field Sunday. In the snow, against the Jets, two teams absent of any playoff ambitions finished out the string. Funny line from Ezekiel Elliott, who said he’d always wanted to play in a snow game. After doing it, he said it kind of sucks, which is also a decent summation of the Patriots’ season. They finished 4-13: Bill Belichick’s worst season.

Nobody has said is officially, but you don’t have to squint too hard to see what’s coming. It won’t be another parade. There have been many of those. Belichick famously changed the name of his boat to reflect the count of his Super Bowl rings. It got to eight.

But like the end for Brady in New England, it’s not another moment bathed in glory. For Belichick, against the team he famously agreed to coach only to resign a day later, he was standing there for hours in the snow as his team got six first downs and 119 yards. Each of those stats was the fewest the Patriots have recorded in any of his 429 games as their head coach.

The fact that it was a snow game only invites reflection on a night more than 20 years ago. The Raiders still shake their heads, as a little-known rule became a thing, and the Patriots dynasty was born as a result. They won their first Super Bowl that year and have added five more.

But it’s been five years since the Patriots won a postseason game. Belichick’s role in the greatness is undeniable — but so is his hand in the current state of the franchise. Nobody believes he’s at the end of his coaching career. But I don’t know anyone who believes it continues in New England.

If so, the man with eight rings walks off without fanfare, in the snow, 4-13. Sometimes it just ends. Dip to black.



Belichick mum on future after Pats’ loss in Week 18

Patriots coach Bill Belichick shrugs off questions regarding his future after New England’s loss to the Jets.


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