The Nation's Tears: Volume III

Deathofthebambino

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Apr 12, 2005
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I honestly don't know how you got to your post from this clip. They were asking the question, yes, but not one of them concluded that at all. None of them criticized the Patriots for being underrepresented, either. In the openning, he mentioned they have 66% representation which is slightly lower than the 70% league average, but that the "blackest" team he can think of turned out to have 64%. Concluded that the Pats only look like they're a "white" team because a few of their highest profile players happen to be white. They all concluded that people hate the Pats because they win.

So, based on your link, it would seem that no, it's not a thing, and it doesn't seem like anyone is claiming it is.
Oh, Whitlock thinks race has to do with everything, and the Pats are no different. He basically comes out and says and I'm paraphrasing because I don't want to watch the stupid thing again "They're 66% now, but I've been beating this drum for a while, back when they were like 53% or 54%, etc...." Then he goes into his whole schtick about how if he lost 100 pounds, people would still call him the fat guy. He's basically saying "They may not be as racist as they were, but they're still racist because that's how people perceive them based on their history." The guy who throws out the stats in the early going is definitely taking the position that race isn't a factor when it comes to the Patriots, but not Whitlock. I don't think he's ever come out and openly said the "Patriots are racist," but he does the whole "I'm not saying they're racist, but............" thing.
 

drbretto

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Oh, Whitlock thinks race has to do with everything, and the Pats are no different. He basically comes out and says and I'm paraphrasing because I don't want to watch the stupid thing again "They're 66% now, but I've been beating this drum for a while, back when they were like 53% or 54%, etc...." Then he goes into his whole schtick about how if he lost 100 pounds, people would still call him the fat guy. He's basically saying "They may not be as racist as they were, but they're still racist because that's how people perceive them based on their history." The guy who throws out the stats in the early going is definitely taking the position that race isn't a factor when it comes to the Patriots, but not Whitlock. I don't think he's ever come out and openly said the "Patriots are racist," but he does the whole "I'm not saying they're racist, but............" thing.
Eh, I guess. Not knowing anything about Whitlock coming into it, that's not how I took it at all. I took it as he was asking (himself) the question, but that he thought about it and it wasn't the right perception, even explaining why. I don't see any problem with an all-black panel discussing something like this, but it really doesn't seem like anyone was making any claims except that it didn't seem to be racially motivated at all.
 

lexrageorge

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No, no, no. I won't let anyone do it. There was no reasonable explanation as to why they did it in that Jets game, with the #1 seed on the line. BB said the reason he did in 2013 was because of the wind. That wasn't the case in 2015. And let's not act like Ryan Fitzpatrick and the Jets were some crap team that we were beating up over and over again. Fitzpatrick threw for almost 600 yards, 5td's/0ints against us in 2 games that year, including 296/3td's in the game we kicked off (he had 74 yards and a td, and the Jets scored in 6 plays in overtime). We couldn't stop him that year, and every time we played the Jets during those years, it was a nailbiter. From 2013-2015, these were the scores of their games:

Pats W: 13-10
Jets W: 30-27
Pats W: 27-25
Pats W: 17-16
Pats W: 30-23
Jets W: 26-20

The Pats actually blew out Manning and the Broncos more than they did the Jets during those seasons.

It was a horrible decision in 2015. And it isn't hindsight bias. He overthought that one, and when the Pats lost in the AFCCG in Denver later on because of it, I hated him. Just like I did for the Butler benching. As good as BB has been, and he's been otherworldly good, I believe he made 2 coaching decisions that nobody else on Earth would have made, and they both potentially cost us Super Bowls.
There's a bit of game theory with the newer OT rules, and that probably trapped Belichick to some extent. My guess is that BB thought the defense could hold the Jets to no more than a FG, if that. And so the Pats felt better going down into the end of the stadium they were more comfortable in, knowing whether they need a FG to win or tie. Similar to the argument that if OT rules guaranteed both teams at least one possession, you would almost always want to defer.

It was obviously a mistake in hindsight. It's unclear to me if it was the right decision at the time it was made, as I really didn't think the Pats D was all that great, and they were on the road to boot. But sometimes even the best football minds will make the wrong decision; it's just the nature of the game.
 

Al Zarilla

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It doesn't even make any sense why he would hate the Patriots, other than they thoroughly kicked his ass every time they lined up. But his Colts weren't even competitive with the Pats. He should hate Bruce Arians for being a better coach.
Pretty stupid thing to come out with for Pagano. Why burn the bridge to Patriotland when you never know when you might need a job and they are one of just 32 places that have paying NFL coaching jobs?
 

loshjott

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Pretty stupid thing to come out with for Pagano. Why burn the bridge to Patriotland when you never know when you might need a job and they are one of just 32 places that have paying NFL coaching jobs?
Eh, I don't think it's a big deal. He said he respected them and BB. If he said he didn't hate the Pats, everyone would know he's a liar. If Tomlin, Harbaugh, Polian, etc. don't hate the Patriots you'd have to wonder if they've lost their competitive edge. It should drive them to improve.
 

jodyreeddudley78

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Race was definitely a hot topic leading up to SB LI. IIRC, some alt-righter declared the Pats victory a win for whites, or something like that. Given that fact, it's a fair discussion. That being said, I don't think that there is anyone in the NFL who values something arbitrary like race less than Belichick. I'm pretty sure he really only cares about people that will listen, learn, buy in, and give their best effort. I think anyone that thinks differently hasn't been paying attention.

I mean, the owner was #freeMeek. Was there another owner doing that?
 

Al Zarilla

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Eh, I don't think it's a big deal. He said he respected them and BB. If he said he didn't hate the Pats, everyone would know he's a liar. If Tomlin, Harbaugh, Polian, etc. don't hate the Patriots you'd have to wonder if they've lost their competitive edge. It should drive them to improve.
I still stand by my post. Don’t burn any bridges, unless there is somebody named Hussein or Khomeini on the other side.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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I honestly think this is the first time I ever knew the Pats deferred in that game.
Your post made me a bit curious about the coin flip rules. I don't think they are generally understood. What you actually get when you win the pregame flip is the right to choose or the right to defer. And then either the loser or the deferring team gets the choice in the second half. But actually the choice is between three options. You can choose to kick or receive. Or you can choose direction. And then your opponent gets the other choice.

So, if there's really bad weather, that leads to a very interesting choice. You must choose direction. You can't choose to kick, because if you choose to kick, your opponent gets to choose direction. I don't know why to kick is even a choice, but I guess it theoretically could be important in some circumstances, but the point is that if your priority is that you want to kick for whatever reason, your opponent gets to choose direction. So, it's theoretically possible to receive and choose direction. Etc.

But anyway the part of your post that made me think was your reference to deferring in overtime. I don't think in the regular season there's a concept of deferring. I think the winner of the toss in OT must choose. And let the opponent have the other choice. If you refuse to choose, it's actually a 15 yard penalty. In practice since everyone wants the ball this doesn't come up. But it actually could in the right circumstance.

In the playoffs though, I'm not sure what the rule is. I think there must be a defer concept in OT because theoretically the game could take more than two quarters to complete and there would be a second half kick off. The rule isn't very clear, other than the OT coin flip rule borrowing from the start of game coin flip rule.
 

BaseballJones

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I honestly don't know how you got to your post from this clip. They were asking the question, yes, but not one of them concluded that at all. None of them criticized the Patriots for being underrepresented, either. In the openning, he mentioned they have 66% representation which is slightly lower than the 70% league average, but that the "blackest" team he can think of turned out to have 64%. Concluded that the Pats only look like they're a "white" team because a few of their highest profile players happen to be white. They all concluded that people hate the Pats because they win.

So, based on your link, it would seem that no, it's not a thing, and it doesn't seem like anyone is claiming it is.
Did you watch it all the way through and hear Whitlock’s comments? He was clearly insinuating something. Or at least it seemed to me he was. And if this isn’t a thing, why are they talking about it at all?
 

drbretto

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Did you watch it all the way through and hear Whitlock’s comments? He was clearly insinuating something. Or at least it seemed to me he was. And if this isn’t a thing, why are they talking about it at all?
Admittedly I did cut out after about 9 minutes because it sounded like they were veering off. I went back and finished it and I do see that Whitlock was the only one not letting it go. But even he was citing it as a perception that did not match reality, and it seemed like everyone else completely disagreed with him, too.

I do no longer think you're crazy for bringing it up (I should have watched the whole thing, that's lazy of me), but I also don't think a single person's feeling qualify as a "Thing" either. I can say that prior to watching that clip, even I had perceived this Pats team as being a touch white, though. That clip actually convinced me otherwise. I do think it's just that Brady, Edelman and Gronk are all white and front and center (maybe Amendola from before as well, that's when it popped into my head). If I'm wondering it, maybe it is/was kind of a thing to some people out there. We see fans of other teams justifying their hate for the Pats by pretending it's about "cheating" or whatever, so with the faces of the team being predominantly white, it wouldn't surprise me if Whitlock wasn't the only one thinking it. Maybe it was a good conversation to have, and I'm glad most of the panel came to rational conclusions.
 

DrewDawg

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Not sure if this is the right thread for this (or Celebrating What Is, or P&G even), but I stumbled across this while digging a bunch of awesome post-Super Bowl videos on YouTube.

The question of the racial makeup of the Patriots. Is it a real thing? Is it a real issue? I don't want to make something out of nothing, if nothing is indeed there. But when a national broadcast is discussing it, does that mean there's any merit to this?

Whitlock (the host) talks about how for years the Pats have been well below the league average in terms of black players. It is apparent that he sees that as a problem. (I mean in any sample, it will likely look like a bell curve and SOMEONE is going to be on the lower end of any sample.) But if the Patriots just win win win win win, WHY is it a problem? I guess I admit to being a little naive here. What is going on with this? Is this just more whining because they keep winning? Is this something that the Patriots actually should care about?

I don't have time to watch it all now, but Whitlock, generally, loves the Patriots.

As to why it's an issue, the media just needs something new to talk about now that the whole Brady debate has ended.
 

BaseballJones

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Admittedly I did cut out after about 9 minutes because it sounded like they were veering off. I went back and finished it and I do see that Whitlock was the only one not letting it go. But even he was citing it as a perception that did not match reality, and it seemed like everyone else completely disagreed with him, too.

I do no longer think you're crazy for bringing it up (I should have watched the whole thing, that's lazy of me), but I also don't think a single person's feeling qualify as a "Thing" either. I can say that prior to watching that clip, even I had perceived this Pats team as being a touch white, though. That clip actually convinced me otherwise. I do think it's just that Brady, Edelman and Gronk are all white and front and center (maybe Amendola from before as well, that's when it popped into my head). If I'm wondering it, maybe it is/was kind of a thing out there. We see fans of other teams justifying their hate for the Pats by pretending it's about "cheating" or whatever, so with the faces of the team being predominantly white, it wouldn't surprise me if Whitlock wasn't the only one thinking it. Maybe it was a good conversation to have, and I'm glad most of the panel came to rational conclusions.
Yeah I’m not saying it IS a thing. And like I said, I just stumbled on it looking for Super Bowl stuff. And the fact that four minorities (three of whom played in the NFL) were talking about it prompted me to ask the question of whether it was a real thing or just a whole lot of nothing.

It was interesting that Jennings and Houshmandzadeh made comments where it was clear that the perception among black players in the league is that white players (skill position players anyway) are less talented and therefore need to work harder. Wiley was arguing that time should have taught us by now that that isn’t necessarily true. But it was interesting conversation anyway.
 

lexrageorge

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Your post made me a bit curious about the coin flip rules. I don't think they are generally understood. What you actually get when you win the pregame flip is the right to choose or the right to defer. And then either the loser or the deferring team gets the choice in the second half. But actually the choice is between three options. You can choose to kick or receive. Or you can choose direction. And then your opponent gets the other choice.

So, if there's really bad weather, that leads to a very interesting choice. You must choose direction. You can't choose to kick, because if you choose to kick, your opponent gets to choose direction. I don't know why to kick is even a choice, but I guess it theoretically could be important in some circumstances, but the point is that if your priority is that you want to kick for whatever reason, your opponent gets to choose direction. So, it's theoretically possible to receive and choose direction. Etc.

But anyway the part of your post that made me think was your reference to deferring in overtime. I don't think in the regular season there's a concept of deferring. I think the winner of the toss in OT must choose. And let the opponent have the other choice. If you refuse to choose, it's actually a 15 yard penalty. In practice since everyone wants the ball this doesn't come up. But it actually could in the right circumstance.

In the playoffs though, I'm not sure what the rule is. I think there must be a defer concept in OT because theoretically the game could take more than two quarters to complete and there would be a second half kick off. The rule isn't very clear, other than the OT coin flip rule borrowing from the start of game coin flip rule.
It's interesting as there are some coin toss options that would never make sense. For example, consider this hypothetical between the Patriots and Dolts, in which the Pats win the toss. Belichick (actually Matt Slater) can then, as you said, elect any of the following options:

a.) Receive
b.) Kick off
c.) defend side a or side b
d.) Defer

There is never any reason to select (b) or (c), as then the Pats would basically be handing the Dolts another possession. Basically, if a team wins the toss and elects to kick off, the losing team would then use their option to elect to receive to start the second half. Similarly, if the winning team selects an end to defend, the losing team could elect to receive to start the first half. Then, they make the selection all over again in the second half, the Dolts would get first dibs to start the 2nd half (having lost the initial toss), and would elect to receive again. I guess if the weather was really bad, it may make sense to sacrifice a possession in favor of wind direction.

What the Pats often do is simply defer, which basically forces the losing team to receive the opening kick. The Pats then inform the officials at the start of the second half that they will receive the second half kick. Technically, they could make a different selection, but that would be giving up a possession.

In OT, no team really "defers". In the regular season, there is only one OT period. A winning team could elect to pick an end zone to defend; the losing team could theoretically elect to kick off, but under current rules that would be really dumb. So in the case of that Pats/Jets game, Belichick did not actually defer; he instead chose an endzone to defend, which is justifiable in some (rather rare) cases.

In the playoffs, the only difference is that there is the possibility of a new kickoff to open the 3rd OT period. This is very rare; I think there have been less than 5 in all of the history of the NFL. But basically, the same rules apply; the team losing the OT toss gets the first choice to start the 3rd OT period. So, while a coach could defer, the chances of a 3rd OT period under the current rules are so small that it's extremely unlikely. And there is a new coin flip between the 4th and 5th OT period if the game is still undecided.
 

RetractableRoof

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Devoid of race consideration, the standard is simply (for those building the team rosters): are they putting their hands on the best players they can? The NFL is obviously a results oriented league. By definition, if you are winning then you are building your team well, so your roster decisions must be generally correct for your team. You can't criticize a team for choosing player A over B if at the end of the day you win with A. If there was a long period of time when a team wasn't winning, and there was an imbalance with the rest of the league based on race - then you might infer they were drafting poorly in an effort to maintain that imbalance.

I think the issue in some cases is teams draft best combine athlete available versus best player available, and further we all accept BB's approach is to look for best player available for what he wants to do - even in some cases if he has to sacrifice athleticism for consistency/predictability/desire/attribute X. So there is positional variability compared to the rest of the NFL based on BB valuing attributes different then others assembling rosters. Jamie Collins for example was an extraordinary athlete at his position. At some point he got traded based on some combination of money and his supposed desire to freelance on the field. BB values a left-footed punter. If that is his criteria (and it appears it is) then the best available left footed punter is going to play - regardless of pigmentation. With regard to skill positions: you have HOFers at 2 of the skill positions (and national conversations about viability of a 3rd) - demographics be damned. I see nothing to deliberate on with regard to race and the composition of Patriots players.
 

Ed Hillel

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Yeah the race thing is a scorching-hot take. I would guess if you actually dug into the numbers that the real difference between the Patriots and other teams is completely insignificant and—because of the relatively small numbers we're talking about—easily skewed by having at least two white WRs on the roster in many years, and are generally a team that maintains a lot of continuity. Not that these guys are even basing their arguments on the actual numbers.

More than the specific numbers, though, is that it's utterly laughable to think that Bill Belichick would prefer a white player over a black player even if the latter gave him a better chance of winning.
Fwiw, Marcellus Wiley said last week he did the research and league average was 70% AA players on teams and the Pats were at 67%. He then asked the entire panel who the perceived blackest team was, and they all said “Baltimore.” Wiley then dropped the “their roster is 65% AA,” which shocked everyone. He attributed the perception of white Pats to their receivers, and in particular Edelman. He also said the team is boring and nerdy, which furthers the perception.
 

drbretto

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Fwiw, Marcellus Wiley said last week he did the research and league average was 70% AA players on teams and the Pats were at 67%. He then asked the entire panel who the perceived blackest team was, and they all said “Baltimore.” Wiley then dropped the “their roster is 65% AA,” which shocked everyone. He attributed the perception of white Pats to their receivers, and in particular Edelman. He also said the team is boring and nerdy, which furthers the perception.
OK then, this must have been what kicked off this conversation because they were referencing those numbers in that clip. That seems like a reasonable jumping off point for a conversation.
 

Adrian's Dome

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Prejudice is terrible! Now listen to me hate on people because of the color of their skin.
Seriously.

The Pats are racist because some of their high-profile players are white in a league that's 70% black (of which they're pretty much in the same ballpark.)

But, you know, the implications that white players (from non-white players) aren't as talented and have to work harder or they're just boring and nerdy isn't, those are just "observations." Would that ever be considered an "observation" if the roles were reversed?

Why the hell is this conversation still going? Jesus.
 

Kliq

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The perception that the Patriots aren’t drafting the best combine “athletes” is also somewhat race based. I’ll look it up later, but I remember right before the Atlanta Super Bowl someone said that Edelman, Hogan and Amendola were not athletic enough and wouldn’t be in the league if they didn’t play for the Patriots.

Of course, Amendola has played on several non-Patriot teams, and Edelman and Hogan are really only in the league BECAUSE they are great athletes. Gronk is often labeled as a “freak athlete” a term that is typically and callously thrown around when talking about black athletes.
 

drbretto

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Seriously.

The Pats are racist because some of their high-profile players are white in a league that's 70% black (of which they're pretty much in the same ballpark.)

But, you know, the implications that white players (from non-white players) aren't as talented and have to work harder or they're just boring and nerdy isn't, those are just "observations." Would that ever be considered an "observation" if the roles were reversed?

Why the hell is this conversation still going? Jesus.
I feel like these are reactions to the idea of this conversation and not the conversation. And that'd be why it's still going.

It looks like the clip was a conversation based on those numbers. It's an all black panel, that seems like a normal thing to bring up, and everyone on the panel agreed that there's nothing racist there. One only stated that there was a perception, but admitted it doesn't match reality.

There's no one I can see pushing this narrative to anything beyond that.
 

Sausage in Section 17

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I feel like these are reactions to the idea of this conversation and not the conversation. And that'd be why it's still going.

It looks like the clip was a conversation based on those numbers. It's an all black panel, that seems like a normal thing to bring up, and everyone on the panel agreed that there's nothing racist there. One only stated that there was a perception, but admitted it doesn't match reality.

There's no one I can see pushing this narrative to anything beyond that.

In the social media age, almost any racial demographic statistic, once presented, has the power to start an avalanche of ridiculous comments and straw man arguments.

I just wish they’d let the KKK field a team in the NFL
 

drbretto

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In the social media age, almost any racial demographic statistic, once presented, has the power to start an avalanche of ridiculous comments and straw man arguments.
OH, you don't have to remind me of that one, I assure you. Is there something like that going on though? Because in the context of this thread, all I saw was BaseballJones's post and no references of anything else or any kind of rampant discussion or accusations going on. From this angle, it *looks* like the assumptions are the only thing keeping the conversation going. I don't watch ESPN or go to twitter so it's totally possible I'm missing info here, though.
 

RetractableRoof

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The perception that the Patriots aren’t drafting the best combine “athletes” is also somewhat race based. I’ll look it up later, but I remember right before the Atlanta Super Bowl someone said that Edelman, Hogan and Amendola were not athletic enough and wouldn’t be in the league if they didn’t play for the Patriots.

Of course, Amendola has played on several non-Patriot teams, and Edelman and Hogan are really only in the league BECAUSE they are great athletes. Gronk is often labeled as a “freak athlete” a term that is typically and callously thrown around when talking about black athletes.
Fair, I should have said the Pats weren't drafting exclusively combine studs. Hogan was taken off a lacrosse field, right? Ebner was known for Rugby, Neal was a wrestler, I don't mean to say they weren't drafting hugely athletic players, only that they weren't letting the combine numbers be the first driver. Clearly they desire physical freaks like Moss, Gronk, Gordon, Jones, Collins, etc.
 

Super Nomario

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Fair, I should have said the Pats weren't drafting exclusively combine studs. Hogan was taken off a lacrosse field, right? Ebner was known for Rugby, Neal was a wrestler, I don't mean to say they weren't drafting hugely athletic players, only that they weren't letting the combine numbers be the first driver. Clearly they desire physical freaks like Moss, Gronk, Gordon, Jones, Collins, etc.
I don't know that they don't care about Combine numbers. Like in most things, they have a unique approach. They care less than most teams about the 40 (though at certain positions, like WR and CB, they do seem to care) and more about the 3-cone. A lot of times if you look at the Combine numbers of Patriots you don't think of as particularly athletic, you find they actually excelled at pretty much every drill but the 40. Ninkovich (though not a Pats draftee) is a great example - lousy 4.9 40, but above average jumps and outstanding agility drills.

Edelman is kind of an example of the Patriots taking a Combine freak - he wasn't a Combine invite, but his Pro Day numbers were sick, especially his 3.92 shuttle and 6.62 3-cone. His 4.52 40 was just pretty good, of course. But obviously they weren't drafting him based on his tape at WR.
 

InstaFace

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If you want to know more about Whitlock, read about how he handled his run as EIC of The Undefeated: https://deadspin.com/can-jason-whitlock-save-espns-black-grantland-from-hi-1586606960
Wow, we had a close call that we never knew about:

Despite the demurral, work on the site [that became The Undefeated] is ongoing. The site doesn't yet have a name. "Soul Food" was one candidate, according to an ESPN source. Another was "Sons of Sam," a reference not to the serial killer but to the pioneering black sportswriter Sam Lacy. (An ESPN spokesman told me today that both names are out of the running.)
 

simplyeric

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It's interesting as there are some coin toss options that would never make sense. For example, consider this hypothetical between the Patriots and Dolts, in which the Pats win the toss. Belichick (actually Matt Slater) can then, as you said, elect any of the following options:

a.) Receive
b.) Kick off
c.) defend side a or side b
d.) Defer

There is never any reason to select (b) or (c), as then the Pats would basically be handing the Dolts another possession. Basically, if a team wins the toss and elects to kick off, the losing team would then use their option to elect to receive to start the second half. Similarly, if the winning team selects an end to defend, the losing team could elect to receive to start the first half. Then, they make the selection all over again in the second half, the Dolts would get first dibs to start the 2nd half (having lost the initial toss), and would elect to receive again. I guess if the weather was really bad, it may make sense to sacrifice a possession in favor of wind direction.

What the Pats often do is simply defer, which basically forces the losing team to receive the opening kick. The Pats then inform the officials at the start of the second half that they will receive the second half kick. Technically, they could make a different selection, but that would be giving up a possession.

In OT, no team really "defers". In the regular season, there is only one OT period. A winning team could elect to pick an end zone to defend; the losing team could theoretically elect to kick off, but under current rules that would be really dumb. So in the case of that Pats/Jets game, Belichick did not actually defer; he instead chose an endzone to defend, which is justifiable in some (rather rare) cases.

In the playoffs, the only difference is that there is the possibility of a new kickoff to open the 3rd OT period. This is very rare; I think there have been less than 5 in all of the history of the NFL. But basically, the same rules apply; the team losing the OT toss gets the first choice to start the 3rd OT period. So, while a coach could defer, the chances of a 3rd OT period under the current rules are so small that it's extremely unlikely. And there is a new coin flip between the 4th and 5th OT period if the game is still undecided.
Wait, so I always thought that ‘defer’ meant to defer reviving the kickoff. Are you saying that it actually means they defer any decision whatsoever, and get to make that decision at the half?
 

lexrageorge

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Wait, so I always thought that ‘defer’ meant to defer reviving the kickoff. Are you saying that it actually means they defer any decision whatsoever, and get to make that decision at the half?
Correct. The team winning the toss makes the decision for the first half, while the team losing the toss makes the decision at the 2nd half. It's just that from a practical matter, when the team winning the toss decides to "defer", the losing team will almost always elect to receive to start the game.
 

RetractableRoof

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I don't know that they don't care about Combine numbers. Like in most things, they have a unique approach. They care less than most teams about the 40 (though at certain positions, like WR and CB, they do seem to care) and more about the 3-cone. A lot of times if you look at the Combine numbers of Patriots you don't think of as particularly athletic, you find they actually excelled at pretty much every drill but the 40. Ninkovich (though not a Pats draftee) is a great example - lousy 4.9 40, but above average jumps and outstanding agility drills.

Edelman is kind of an example of the Patriots taking a Combine freak - he wasn't a Combine invite, but his Pro Day numbers were sick, especially his 3.92 shuttle and 6.62 3-cone. His 4.52 40 was just pretty good, of course. But obviously they weren't drafting him based on his tape at WR.
I agree with everything you just said, I'm clumsily trying to say that I think where they rank various characteristics is also different. I think they have a floor for certain skills, and value football IQ very highly, etc.
 

splendid splinter

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Correct. The team winning the toss makes the decision for the first half, while the team losing the toss makes the decision at the 2nd half. It's just that from a practical matter, when the team winning the toss decides to "defer", the losing team will almost always elect to receive to start the game.
Edited to remove “I don’t think that’s quite right” as I mis-read the exchange, sorry.

You’re right, you’re deferring your decision to kick or receive to the second half, so the other team chooses for the first half, and of course they will always choose to receive. I think there was a college game several years ago (involving Arizona or Arizona St, maybe?) where the winner of the toss chose to defer, the losing team chose to kick off (for some reason or just a brain cramp) and so the toss winner received the first half kickoff and then elected to receive the second half kickoff.
 
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rsmith7

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Jul 18, 2005
21
I don’t think that’s quite right. You’re deferring your decision to kick or receive to the second half, so the other team chooses for the first half, and of course they will always choose to receive. I think there was a college game several years ago (involving Arizona or Arizona St, maybe?) where the winner of the toss chose to defer, the losing team chose to kick off (for some reason or just a brain cramp) and so the toss winner received the first half kickoff and then elected to receive the second half kickoff.
This is correct. Always worth it in "amateur" ball to defer and see if the other team will make this mistake.
 

Dahabenzapple2

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Re-watching SB 49: Lynch was just stopped for the second time on 3rd & short yet the Big Lie continues that the Pats won because it was 100% that Lynch would have scored at the end of the game. Even though twice (or more?) earlier in the game he was stuffed.
 

tims4wins

PN23's replacement
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Jul 15, 2005
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Lynch was one of the worst backs in football on 3rd and 4th and short / goal over a several year period. In their season opener in 2015 he was stopped on 4th and inches to end the game. The narrative has been refuted, and is a complete joke.
 

snowmanny

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Irsay is still whacked.

ProFootballTalk : Jim Irsay attempts to define what it means to be the greatest team ever
https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2019/02/09/jim-irsay-attempts-to-define-what-it-means-to-be-the-greatest-team-ever/
You have to win three Super Bowls in a row to be the greatest team ever? I'm going to steal this: Q. Who is the greatest basketball player ever? A. They haven't been born yet.

Anyway the Patriots came closest to that feat 2016-2018, probably followed by the Patriots 2014-2016 or the 49ers 1988-90 and then maybe the Cowboys 1992-1995,
Re-watching SB 49: Lynch was just stopped for the second time on 3rd & short yet the Big Lie continues that the Pats won because it was 100% that Lynch would have scored at the end of the game. Even though twice (or more?) earlier in the game he was stuffed.
It's so dumb. I've posted the stats before, but the Seahawks generally and Lynch in particular sucked at goal line situations, and yeah, they'd stuffed him before. There's some clip of Patricia talking about how they had "3000 pounds" on the line and there was no way they could run Lynch, and they were thinking that Seattle would run the play they ran, which the Pats had stopped 0 times out of 7 or 8 in practice. He said the play that would have been a TD was a toss to Lynch in the flat. A Lynch run literally probably ends up in a loss and a Seattle timeout followed by a pass.

ed here's a link to Matty P

 
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Hagios

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Dec 15, 2007
672
Edelman is kind of an example of the Patriots taking a Combine freak - he wasn't a Combine invite, but his Pro Day numbers were sick, especially his 3.92 shuttle and 6.62 3-cone. His 4.52 40 was just pretty good, of course. But obviously they weren't drafting him based on his tape at WR.
From the SBNation article on Edelman before he was drafted:
Edelman’s times of 3.91 seconds in the short shuttle and 10.74 in the long shuttle would have been the fastest times recorded at the Combine, regardless of position. NFL people asked him to run the short shuttle again because they didn’t believe the number and Edelman actually ran it even faster the next time.

"He’s a really skilled guy, similar to (Antwaan) Randle El and Seneca Wallace. He can play ‘Wildcat,’ return kicks, and he may be the next Wes Welker as a wide receiver," a league insider said.
https://www.sbnation.com/2009/4/22/849496/getting-to-know-super-sleeper
 

BaseballJones

goalpost mover
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Oct 1, 2015
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Collinsworth fell for and helped create the false narrative regarding Lynch and the supposed bad play call.
Agreed. But in real time, if we're honest with ourselves, how many of us thought they'd run Lynch again?

*raises hand*

I was shocked they didn't. And everyone in the room with me - about 15 other guys, mainly college football players - were similarly shocked.
 

TheoShmeo

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I was at the game and sitting next to a very knowledgeable and mild mannered Chiefs fan who was mildly rooting for the Pats...as the play began, he shrieked in utter shock “he’s passing!!!!!”

So yeah, it’s true that Lynch was not good at short yardage for some odd reason but that the Seahawks passed there was a surprise to almost everyone. I was in a daze when that play began so I can’t say what I was thinking. But I think Chiefs fan was a good proxy for most people.
 

SeoulSoxFan

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Jun 27, 2006
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Lol. Apparently the Rams assistant coach who called Brady a "f*ing pretty boy" is none other than Chris Shula, the grandson of Don Shula.

The salt mine runs generations.

P.S. Makes me giggle to think absolutely NO ONE is comparing BB and Grandpa Shula as the HC GOAT anymore.
 

Super Nomario

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I was at the game and sitting next to a very knowledgeable and mild mannered Chiefs fan who was mildly rooting for the Pats...as the play began, he shrieked in utter shock “he’s passing!!!!!”

So yeah, it’s true that Lynch was not good at short yardage for some odd reason but that the Seahawks passed there was a surprise to almost everyone. I was in a daze when that play began so I can’t say what I was thinking. But I think Chiefs fan was a good proxy for most people.
There was a time element to it, too. The Seahawks didn't have time to run the ball three straight times. If they run on second down and don't get it, then you know they're going to pass on third down. So it made sense to pass on second, when the Pats might not be expecting it, and then preserve the option to either run or pass on third. But we've been over all of this before a million times after it happened.
 

TheoShmeo

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There was a time element to it, too. The Seahawks didn't have time to run the ball three straight times. If they run on second down and don't get it, then you know they're going to pass on third down. So it made sense to pass on second, when the Pats might not be expecting it, and then preserve the option to either run or pass on third. But we've been over all of this before a million times after it happened.
True.

Many NFL fans think the Pats were gifted a SB when Carroll passed there. Some of them are Haters and are latching onto low hanging fruit. Others legitimately believe it was a Carroll gift. They all ignore your timing point and the Lynch point. They also ignore that had the play worked -- which it very well could have -- that no one would have thought twice about the play selection. They also ignore that the Seahawks were quite fortunate to be in that position after Kearse did his best David Tyree impression. Finally, they ignore that Malcolm Butler made a crazy great play on the ball, and that Brandon Browner provided him the perfect lane in which to do it. Never mind the Hightower-Hicks play on the down before.

That some fans don't fully understand a Patriots SB winning play is the ultimate high class problem, I suppose.
 

Ed Hillel

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Dec 12, 2007
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There was a time element to it, too. The Seahawks didn't have time to run the ball three straight times. If they run on second down and don't get it, then you know they're going to pass on third down. So it made sense to pass on second, when the Pats might not be expecting it, and then preserve the option to either run or pass on third. But we've been over all of this before a million times after it happened.
They almost certainly did have time for 3 running plays, but they bled the clock instead. Lynch was tackled with 57 seconds left at the one, and Seattle had a timeout. They snap the ball with 40 seconds on second and they can re-set and run another play with 10-15 on third if he’s stuffed, then immediately call timeout for fourth.

But I think letting the clock bleed is a perfectly viable strategy, as well. Pats had two timeouts and a fg ties it if Seattle scores. In that case, you’re gonna need to throw at least once. An inside slant with a short QB and your 3rd WR probably isn’t the best play on 2nd down, though, especially with a mobile QB...

Oh well!
 

Super Nomario

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They almost certainly did have time for 3 running plays, but they bled the clock instead. Lynch was tackled with 57 seconds left at the one, and Seattle had a timeout. They snap the ball with 40 seconds on second and they can re-set and run another play with 10-15 on third if he’s stuffed, then immediately call timeout for fourth.

But I think letting the clock bleed is a perfectly viable strategy, as well. Pats had two timeouts and a fg ties it if Seattle scores. In that case, you’re gonna need to throw at least once. An inside slant with a short QB and your 3rd WR probably isn’t the best play on 2nd down, though, especially with a mobile QB...

Oh well!
You're right; I forgot they had a timeout. So they could run three times, but not if they wanted to bleed the clock first, and they decided (sensibly) that was more of a priority once they got inside the five. Part of me wonders if they expected Belichick to call a time out and let them off the hook.