Before the New England Patriots signed Tim Tebow on Monday, speculation about the team’s interest in the quarterback was based largely on a dinner meeting between Tebow and head coach Bill Belichick before the 2010 NFL draft.
The two men reportedly hit it off while dining at Tresca, a Tuscan restaurant in the North End. Though the former University of Florida star was drafted 25th overall by the Denver Broncos, Belichick remained a Tebow admirer.
Now that Tebow is back in town as a member of Patriots, Tresca business manager Jennifer Bacon shared some details about the get-together, which she said lasted “several hours.”
“He brought a football,” Bacon said of the famously earnest Tebow. “I don’t think he threw it, but he showed up with a football.”
Belichick and Tebow were joined at the dinner by Nick Caserio, the Patriots’ director of player personnel, Bacon recalled.
The team had requested privacy for the trio, and Tresca provided the entire Tuscan Room — its main dining room, which seats 70 people and offers a second-floor view of Hanover Street.
Tresca, co-owned by Boston Bruins legend Ray Bourque, is a favorite dinner spot for the city’s professional athletes because it readily accommodates privacy requests, Bacon said.
The restaurant’s chefs prepared a custom menu for Tebow, Belichick, and Caserio, whose attire was business casual.
“Coach Belichick cleaned up very well; he was a real gentleman,” Bacon said. “There was no cutoff sweatshirt.”
Tebow asked for chicken parmesan, which is not a Tuscan dish, Bacon noted, but Tresca obliged. The gridiron guests also ordered two of the restaurant’s signature items, antipasti and veal meatballs, but “basically said to make whatever you suggest,” Bacon recalled.
Did Tresca pair the dishes with some fine Italian wines?
“They drank ginger ale,” Bacon said. “I’m not even sure if Tebow was of age at that point. They were not really into partaking that evening.”