By Michael Hurley, CBS Boston

BOSTON (CBS) — It just wouldn’t be a Patriots-Jets week if there weren’t some cheap shots fired at Bill Belichick from New York.

The Patriots’ head coach was pictured in a not-so-flattering way on the back page of the New York Post on Tuesday, with Jets coach Rex Ryan pictured serving a turkey that has the head of Belichick.

“Thanks Bill!” the headline reads. “Jets lickin’ their chops as butterball Belichick’s brainlock shelves Gronk.”

The headline, of course refers to Rob Gronkowski breaking his forearm while blocking on an extra-point attempt late in Sunday’s 59-24 Patriots victory. Columnist Steve Serby then took the obvious, lazy route of pinning the injury on Belichick and his evil, maniacal reign of terror as head coach of the New England Patriots.

“Bill Belichick would run over his grandmother if she stood in his way. He is the ruthless, merciless, cutthroat coach who takes no prisoners,” Serby wrote. “But sometimes, when you live by the sword, you die by the sword. Sometimes, common sense takes a holiday, even for great coaches.”

As expected from reading the headline, Serby doesn’t let facts get in the way of his fun argument. While just about everyone who’s ever been involved in football as a player or coach said that it’s very, very rare that a player would ever be taken off a special teams unit, even late in a blowout, and despite the fact that teams dress just 45 players, many of whom do not fill the requirements of being essentially an offensive lineman on field goals, Serby is not interested in hearing it.

“I will give you the ‘that’s stupid’ argument,” he boasted.


Serby then jumped on the very hot, relevant topic of the Patriots running up the score back in 2007. With his finger squarely on the pulse of what’s happening in 2012, Serby recalled the Patriots’ 52-7 win over the Redskins. Serby is still upset that Belichick went for it twice on fourth down against poor little old Joe Gibbs, which of course is the worst of any argument about the Patriots’ “running it up.”

How, exactly, would kicking a field goal not be considered running up the score, but running an offensive play and giving the defense a chance to get the ball back without giving up points is considered running it up? That obviously defies any and all logic, which is something that tends to be missing whenever irrational anti-Belichick stories are written in New York.

But of course, that is to be expected whenever the Patriots are preparing to head to New York. Remember, this is the same newspaper that placed an asterisk next to the Patriots’ record in the standings for the entirety of the 2007 season and ran some hard-hitting news reports such as “Pats* Fans Cheat Their Hearts Out.” So with the Jets stuck at 4-6 and not going anywhere this year, columnists need something to get folks to pick up the newspaper and drive some interest in Thursday night’s game. Apparently nothing accomplishes that task better than hate-fueled drivel about the coach from New England.

Serby ends his column with a real zinger that is sure to keep Belichick up at night: “Turkey move right before Thanksgiving.”

The same, sadly, can be said about the column.

Read more from Michael by clicking here, or find him on Twitter @michaelFhurley.

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