BOSTON (CBS) – Bill Belichick has a little fun with the media from time to time during the week, often enjoying a good Bon Jovi reference or expanding greatly on the simplest of special teams plays.
But immediately following a game, that is a different story. Depending on the outcome, it could feel more like a wake than a press conference for an athletic contest.
Curious as to just how “grumpy” the Belichick is, the Wall Street Journal looked at all 16 of his postgame press conferences this season, and counted just seven instances where the head coach cracked a smile.
Watching video of every Patriots postgame news conference from this season, we counted seven incidents where Belichick smiled. This study surveyed 114.5 minutes of footage, so he smiles at a rate of once every 16 minutes—and keep in mind this is a season where New England won 12 games and the AFC East title.
For proof that Bill did in fact crack a smile, there is photographic evidence in the post.
Only five games this season led to that painful-looking smirk from Belichick — all wins and all coming at Gillette. We didn’t see the postgame sunshine on Bill’s face until Week 6 following a dramatic fourth quarter comeback against the New Orleans Saints, when he apologized for making reporters rewrite their game stories.
See, Belichick does have a bit of a sense of humor.
Two wins this season got not one, but two smiles out of the usually stone-faced coach. He had some fun talking about Tom Brady’s running ability following Week 8’s win over the Miami Dolphins (twice), and again cracked multiple grins after winning their regular-season finale over the Buffalo Bills. Bill again made himself smile following that win, mentioning that Tom Brady had helped the Pats win “a couple times in the past,” and again when he made a joke about corner Aqib Talib being the “assistant pro personnel director” for suggesting the Patriots acquire his former Buccaneers teammate, running back LeGarrette Blount.
There was even a laugh mixed in this season, and we have video evidence of it.
Former Patriot linebacker Rosevelt Colvin made a surprise visit to the interview room after New England’s comeback win over the Cleveland Browns in Week 14, and asked Belichick who was the best linebacker he ever coached out of Indianapolis. Belichick got a kick out of the question (answering Colvin, of course) and the two shared a handshake and hug afterwards.
Now with the playoffs getting underway on Saturday, don’t expect many smiles from Belichick — unless he’s talking after a victory on February 2.
Tune in to Patriots-Colts Saturday night on 98.5 The Sports Hub and WBZ-TV — the flagship stations of the New England Patriots. Pregame coverage begins on 98.5 at 5pm and on WBZ-TV at 7pm, with full postgame shows following the game.