New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick leaving team after 6 Super Bowl rings, reports say
New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick is leaving the team, ending a decades long run that produced an unprecedented six Super Bowl victories, according to multiple reports.
The 71-year-old coach, who teamed up with quarterback Tom Brady to build one of pro football’s longest runs of titles, will not coach the team in 2024, NFL reporter Ian Rapoport wrote on X on Thursday.
ESPN also reported the Patriots and Belichick are expected to part ways, citing multiple sources.
The Patriots did not respond to a request for comment Thursday morning, but an advisory from the team said Patriots owner Robert Kraft and Belichick would hold a news conference at noon.
In addition to his winning ways on the field, passive football fans might best know Belichick for his peculiar sideline fashion and gruff personality, so terse that any signs of personality have been deemed noteworthy over the years.
With no detail too small to address, Belichick once complained that the sleeves of his sweatshirts and hoodies were too long and distracting. His answer was to simply cut off sleeves in one of football’s most well known couture statements.
When the Patriots were embroiled in the 2015 “Deflategate” scandal, as Brady and New England were caught using footballs inflated to pressure below league standards, Belichick pleaded ignorance and made a reference to the “My Cousin Vinny” character Mona Lisa Vito, played by Oscar winner Marisa Tomei.
But it was in the months of January when Belichick’s Canton credentials were sealed, as he led New England to win 30 of 42 playoff games. His Pats hoisted the Lombardi Trophy in 2019, 2017, 2015, 2005, 2004 and 2002.
Even Belichick’s failures have burnished the coach’s resume, as his Pats have lost three times in pro football’s ultimate game.
Sunday’s Week 18 loss to the New York Jets was also Belichick’s 165th regular season defeat tying for the most in NFL history with Reeves (190-165-2) and Jeff Fisher (173-165-1). Those 165 losses overseen by Belichick, of course, are far overshadowed by his 302 victories, adding up to a staggering .646 wining clip.
While Brady’s Buccaneers went 32-18, won a Super Bowl and qualified for the playoffs in all three of his Tampa seasons before retiring, Belichick’s Pats are just 29-38 since 2020.
The Pats bottomed out this season, going 4-13, by far Belichick’s worst campaign on the sidelines — which includes five generally forgettable years in charge in Cleveland where his Browns went 36-44.
It’s not uncommon for even some of the game’s best coaches to go out on low note.
In recent days, Belichick has been compared to Tom Landry of the Dallas Cowboys, a two-time Super Bowl winner and Texas-sized legend who was awkwardly forced out of Irving after three consecutive losing seasons from 1986-88.
Belichick’s career could be boiled down to two forks in the road where he made a pair of spectacularly correct choices.
After he as was fired by the Cleveland Browns, Belichick enjoyed successful stints as a top assistant with the Patriots and New York Jets.
Belichick was poised to take over Gang Green before he made one of the most famous audibles called in football history, resigning his Jets position the same 2000 day he was supposed to be introduced as head coach.
Belichick stepped down from the job he never took via a handwritten note, “I resign as HC of the NYJ.” Since Belichick’s history-making scribble, the Jets have had seven different head coaches and no Super Bowl appearances.
And in another Jets-related twist of fate, New York linebacker Mo Lewis delivered a punishing tackle on Patriots QB Drew Bledsoe on Sept. 23, 2001, knocking the 1993 first-round pick from the game.
Belichick sent in Brady, a little-known sixth-round pick, and stuck with him even after Bledsoe recovered from injury. Belichick had to go back to Blelsoe four months later for the 2002 AFC title game due to a Brady injury.
But even after Bledsoe led the Pats to victory in Pittsburgh, Belichick went back to the healed rookie. A week later, Brady and the Pats stunned “The Greatest Show on Turf” St. Louis Rams in the Super Bowl.