New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick wasn’t happy someone told him to challenge a catch by the Buffalo Bills. The phone on the sideline paid the price.
In the third quarter of a game in which New England trailed 24-9 against the Bills, tight end Dawson Knox caught a pass near the sideline. He was close to being out of bounds, and New England challenged. Replays showed that Knox was clearly in bounds. The challenge had no chance.
When Belichick spoke to whoever was in the press box telling him to challenge — coaches often have someone who will alert them to throw the red challenge flag — he wasn’t happy. He ended the conversation not by hanging up, but by firing the phone down with authority.
Hopefully nobody else needed to make a call on Monday night.
While Belichick has let his frustration out on sideline objects even when things are good, it’s a good metaphor for the Patriots season. The entire campaign has been frustrating. The Patriots aren’t going to the playoffs for the first time since 2008. On Monday night, they were being outclassed by the Bills when Belichick decided to fire the phone down.
At least the season is almost over. The Patriots’ phones and tablets might not have survived many more losses.
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