How did Skip Bayless react to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ divisional-round win over the New Orleans Saints?
By beating the same, old drum, of course.
Bayless has taken aim at Bill Belichick on several occasions this season in wake of Tom Brady’s departure from the New England Patriots, and he did so again Monday, one day after Tampa Bay punched its ticket to the NFC Championship Game.
Brady and the Bucs are one victory away from Super Bowl LV, whereas Belichick and the Patriots missed the playoffs entirely after going 7-9 with Cam Newton under center.
“Bill Belichick once again is getting exposed not only as a coach but as a team builder,” Bayless said on FS1’s “Undisputed.” “Much more as a team builder than a coach. Because I thought at moments this year, I thought his defense was pretty good. At moments, they got a lot out of Cam. But not enough, to the point that Cam’s not gonna be back.”
Tampa Bay’s success isn’t only about Brady. Just as New England’s struggles can’t be pinned solely on Belichick.
But the optics sure aren’t great for the Patriots right now, and Bayless can’t help but wonder whether team owner Robert Kraft regrets more or less choosing his head coach over his longtime quarterback.
“Robert Kraft has to be shaking his head — quietly; he’ll never say so publicly,” Bayless said. “But saying, ‘Damn it, what were we thinking?’ Because I promise you today you’re going to see a whole lot more No. 12 Buccaneers jerseys pop up in and around Boston. You watch.”
Overall, it’s ridiculous to take anything away from Belichick’s legacy based on one season. The Patriots’ two-decade dynasty was the product of both him and Brady being the best at their respective jobs.
Don’t tell that to Bayless, though. He’s been all over Belichick for months, and that criticism might reach another level if the Bucs beat the Green Bay Packers on Sunday as the Patriots sit at home.