And considering that the offenses coach Bill Belichick was accused of committing — taping signals to get his team a competitive advantage — didn’t even end up helping that much, it wouldn’t be surprising if Kraft gave Belichick a little swat for the whole affair.
It turns out Kraft may have done just that.
New York Daily News columnist Gary Myers has written a book called Coaching Confidential: Inside the Fraternity of NFL Coaches. One area he focuses on is the pairing of owners and coaches, with Kraft and Belichick a key example.
“Everybody has their idiosyncrasies, but if there is trust, that’s the key in business, in marriages,” Kraft told Myers in 2010, according to The Boston Globe’s Greg Bedard, who has seen the book. “You build a sense of trust so you go through rough times. Look what happened with this bogus thing with the Jets. I stood by him pretty darn good. That was rough.”
Kraft was referring to Spygate, where the Patriots were accused of taping the Jets’ signals in a way that wasn’t allowed by the league. Kraft argued that the move didn’t surprise the Jets, pointing out other occasions where teams steal signals — including the Jets doing it.
Kraft told Myers that he and Belichick talked about the taping, with Kraft asking how much it helped on a scale of one to 100. Belichick said, “One.”
“Then you’re a real schmuck,” Kraft said he told Belichick.
Kraft also — and not surprisingly — has choice words for former Patriots coach Bill Parcells in Myers’ account, with Kraft being especially displeased that Parcells wasn’t polite enough to talk to Kraft’s wife or his banker.
Kraft kept the accolades for the coach who will always be his favorite.
“[Belichick] would take every edge he could get, but he would never knowingly break the rules or cross the line,” Kraft said. “I know him. I’m not saying he was a choir boy.”
Nope. Just a schmuck.