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BOSTON (CBS) – New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and Giants head coach Tom Coughlin have a history together.
It goes back a long further than their 2008 meeting in Glendale, Arizona.
When asked this week to reflect on their past, Belichick did not hesitate to talk about their days together with the Giants. At that time, Bill was the defensive coordinator and Coughlin was the wide receivers coach under head coach Bill Parcells.
“That was a really a good situation for me. As a defensive backfield coach and a defensive coordinator… you work a lot with the receiver coach — 1-on-1, 7-on-7 drills — and also you talk to each other about ‘We’re playing this technique — What do you see, what can we do better or how would you attack it?,’” Belichick said. “Tom and I had a good relationship and a good give-and-take on that. He would tell me things with our defensive backs – how they were trying to beat them, what they saw from this guy, how they would attack another defensive player with the same route, how they would run it differently on a different player. And the same thing: ‘This is what I see from your receivers, this is how we’re trying to play this guy, he really makes it easy for us on this route by doing this or doing that.’ So it was good; it was constructive and it was good.”
“Bill and I had a very, very good working relationship. This was one of those things where Bill was coaching the secondary, I was coaching the receivers, and we had a certain time or part of the day in which we could work against each other,” Coughlin recalls. “We always had a really great attitude about helping each other and whatever we needed, we got from the other guy. If I was asked to demonstrate some routes or put ourselves in position where perhaps it might have some man coverage adjustments that the secondary needed to see and be able to adjust to, we were more than happy to do that.”
“I really do feel like the way in which we worked was something that became – for our entire team – became a good example for the rest of our coaches and players in terms of cooperating so that we might be the best that we could be. We worked well together, as I said. He’s been a good friend and a guy that I have great respect for,” said Coughlin.
Coughlin obviously went on to become a head coach in college and now in the NFL, but their bond has remained real strong.
“Then of course after the ’90 season, Tom came here [to coach at Boston College] and I went to Cleveland, so we haven’t been together since then but we’ve had, whether he was there or in Jacksonville or in New York, or I was in Cleveland or I was in wherever I was before coming back here, we’ve always maintained a good friendship,” said Belichick. “He and his wife and his family have been friends for quite a few years.”
It’s been a great relationship between the two, minus a few awkward seconds at the end of the 2008 season…
Tune in to the Patriots-Giants game on 98.5 The Sports Hub Sunday at 4:15pm. Pregame coverage kicks on WBZ-TV at 11:30am with Patriots Gameday, with the Hub’s coverage beginning at 1pm. After the game, tune in to the Hub for the Patriots Postgame show, and to MY TV38 for Patriots Fifth Quarter.