Patriots' Belichick tells of 'Redskins' connection
Richmond, Va. (AP) — Bill Belichick says the Washington Redskins were
almost his "second home" during his first NFL season as a low-level
assistant with the Baltimore Colts.
It seems Ted Marchibroda didn't change a thing after going from
Redskins offensive coordinator to Colts head coach in 1975, so
Belichick was put in a charge of changing the name on the playbook.
"One of my jobs was to white-out 'Washington Redskins' and type in
'Baltimore Colts' on it and then Xerox it off," Belichick said. "It was
literally the same offense, and Maxie Baughan was the defensive
coordinator and it was the same defense.
"And I remember there were a couple of pages that somehow snuck into
the playbook that 'Redskins' didn't get whited out — and I heard about
it. ... I learned a lot of about the Redskins organization through the
Belichick gets a look at the modern-day Redskins this week.
His New England Patriots joined Washington on Monday for the start of
three days of joint practices ahead of their preseason opener Thursday.
"I'm sure there will be plenty of things that we can learn from the way
the Redskins do things," Belichick said. "And maybe there'll be some
things they do the same, and if there are some things that are
different, we'll probably take a look at them and say, 'Is that
something we can do?' As a head coach of an NFL team, you don't really
get many opportunities to see what other people are doing."
That's fairly magnanimous, given the state of the two franchises.
Belichick has won three Super Bowls as a head coach. His counterpart,
Jay Gruden, has won two Arena Bowls. While Belichick can spin yarns
about the pre-Indianapolis Colts, many of Gruden's tales go back to the
Orlando Predators and Florida Tuskers.
"These guys have been consistently to playoffs and Super Bowls for the
last 10, 15 years," Gruden said. "To see how they consistently go about
their business is going to be good for all of us."
DeSean Jackson got to go one-on-one with Darrelle Revis. Vince Wilfork
got to hit some unfamiliar linemen. Tom Brady carved up the Redskins
first-team secondary, something Robert Griffin III hasn't been able to
do with any regularity during this camp. When he wasn't otherwise busy,
Griffin was able to watch Brady runs some plays.
"It's not really a time for us to watch him like we're at a zoo," said
Griffin, who then predicted that quote would become "a headline."
When both had free time during a special teams drill, Brady (bright red
No. 12 jersey) and Griffin III (bright gold No. 10) chatted on the
"He was saying he's been in the same offense for 15 years, which is
astounding. It's amazing," Griffin said. "He said it's only my third
year and that I've got a lot of football left in me. That's big coming
from a guy like him. I appreciate that. Hopefully I get a chance to sit
down with him if he's not too busy."
Griffin stayed after practice to sign autographs; Brady didn't.
Patriots fans mingled with Redskins counterparts to make up a
significant portion of a crowd that was capped using a ticketing system
to give everyone space to breathe.
The two coaches were proactively involved, with Belichick paying more
attention to defense and Gruden focusing on offense. There were more
than 170 players running simultaneous drills on two fields, requiring
some serious choreography between the two organizations from the time
they started planning this in the spring.
"We originally put a schedule together, sent it to coach Belichick,"
Gruden said. "He recommended some other things, so we adjusted it to
fit what he wanted to do, what we wanted to do, and it really didn't
take long. We both have the same goal in mind, and that's to look at
our guys and get a good feel for if our guys can play."
One thing the Patriots have yet to master: how to scale back downfield
contact on receivers. The Redskins were instructed on the tighter
enforcement of the rules last week, but New England won't get its visit
from the officials until next week. That was evident Monday when New
England's cornerbacks where grabbing and pushing well past the
"I don't know if they've got that briefing yet, but we definitely did,"
Redskins receiver Andre Roberts said with a laugh as he walked off the
field. "And we kind of noticed that today."
Belichick Talks Up Redskins Connection
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