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Imagine if you will a Bill Belichick job interview, and other thoughts

This is Bill Belichick's 24th season as Patriots coach. Could it also be his last?Matthew J. Lee/Globe Staff

Picked-up pieces while predicting a Patriots win over the Chargers Sunday …

▪ The notion of Bill Belichick coaching another team next season has taken on great steam in recent weeks. After last weekend’s awful loss in the Meadowlands, when Bill was asked about a report that he’s already made a decision regarding his next destination, the coach scoffed and said, “Yeah, that’s ridiculous.”

When a followup question was asked about whether Bill could envision himself coaching anywhere else, the Hoodie said, “Just trying to do the best job I can right now. Obviously, I need to do better.”


Just for fun, let’s fast-forward to Black Monday, Jan. 8, when Bob Kraft announces an “amicable parting of the ways” between the Patriots and their head coach of 24 years. Now imagine Bill going around the country for a series of job interviews with owners of various Panthers, Chargers, Titans, and Commanders.

Q. Nice to have you here today, Coach. Tell us about yourself.

BB. No.

Q. OK then. Maybe you could walk us through your résumé?

BB. I’m not here to talk about the past.

Q. Why should we hire you?

BB. I’m the Mona Lisa Vito of NFL head coaches.

Q. What are your greatest strengths?

BB. All three phases. Offense. Defense. Especially special teams. I’m the master of finding long snappers and guys who played at Rutgers.

Q. Tell me about a time you demonstrated leadership skills.

BB. Watch NFL Films. Check out that second Super Bowl in Glendale when the Seahawks were on the 1-yard line with seconds remaining and everyone wanted me to call time out. I just looked across the field at Pete Carroll’s chaos, said, “Yeah, I got it,” then stood back and let it all be. It’s like Napoleon said: “Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.”


Q. How did you know the Seahawks were going to throw a dumb slant pass into traffic?

BB. We worked on that on Friday.

Q. What are your weaknesses?

BB. Need to hire better, draft better, coach better.

Q. We saw a lot of criticism about you on social media. Any reaction to charges that the game has passed you by, that you now just surround yourself with family and friends?

BB. Yeah, I’m not on Snapface or Myface. I don’t know about any of that.

Q. What’s your work style?

BB. No days off. Do your job. Livin’ on a prayer.

Q. What goes into your most critical decisions during a game?

BB. I do what I think is best for the team.

Q. Who’s the best player you ever coached?

BB. Lawrence Taylor.

Q. What are your pet peeves?

BB. Fumbles. Interceptions. Mangini. Goodell. Jonathan. Tom Jackson. Ted Wells. Fran Levy. Sports talk radio. The Jets.

Q. Where do you see yourself five years from now?

BB. In Canton, Ohio, wearing a yellow jacket.

Q. What’s your current salary?

BB. Yeah, I don’t talk about my salary.

Q. Why did you bench Malcolm Butler?

BB. I told everybody to be ready to go. He wasn’t ready. I just do what’s best for the team.

Q. Swell then, Coach. We’ll make up our minds in a day or two and get back to you. Where can we find you?


BB. I’m on to Cincinnati. I understand the Bengals may have an opening.

▪ Quiz: Name the last five Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks not named Brady or Mahomes (answer below).

▪ Geno Auriemma should have been hired by an NBA team for the single purpose of winning the ridiculous In-Season Tournament. As we saw at the Garden Tuesday, the contrived competition (rooted in point differential) encourages teams to run up the score and embarrass opponents.

That’s how you get the Celtics playing their starters at full speed with a 29-point lead over the Bulls entering the fourth quarter, then playing Hack-a-Drummond, putting Chicago’s rebounding machine on the line to miss five of six free throws.

In their efforts to pad their lead, the Celtics went after Chicago center Andre Drummond, who was erratic at the foul line.Danielle Parhizkaran/Globe Staff

This is Adam Silver’s doing and it’s a disgrace. Worst idea since cryptocurrency.

▪ There likely will be a new Hall of Famer (or more than one) announced from the Baseball Winter Meetings at 7:30 Sunday night. Eight names are being debated by a 16-member veterans committee in Nashville, and when the bare-knuckle brawling is over, Lou Piniella and Jim Leyland could be part of next summer’s Class of 2024. Electees from the BBWAA ballot will be announced Jan. 23.

▪ Andre Dawson has asked the Hall of Fame to change his plaque hat from Expos to Cubs.

▪ HBO is at work on a massive history of the Celtics to be aired at a much later date. The network has done extensive interviews with dozens of former players and spent time at Slade’s Bar & Grill (”Serving up soul in Boston since 1928″) on Tremont Street interviewing former Celtic champ Tom Sanders.


Slade’s was owned by Bill Russell in the 1960s, and Satch told HBO he remembered seeing Jackie Robinson, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, and young Muhammad Ali (then Cassius Clay) sharing a table at Slade’s. The establishment today is owned by Leo Papile, BABC founder and a Celtics basketball ops guy (director of scouting and later player personnel) from 1997-2012.

▪ Seeing Spurs coach Gregg Popovich grab the mike and tell San Antonio fans to stop booing Kawhi Leonard reminded me of watching Belichick’s postgame pressers this year. Genius coaches lose much of their grumpy charm when they stop winning.

▪ Cardinals linebacker Jesse Luketa had a flat tire en route to last weekend’s 37-14 home loss to the Rams. Stranded at a gas station, with no time to fix a flat, he saw a carload of Cardinals fans (two parents and three kids wearing team garb) and asked them for a ride to the game. Luketa will be leaving his new friends tickets for Arizona’s Dec. 17 home game.

▪ New lows for Sports Illustrated. First we find out they’re publishing AI stories. Then, even worse, they made fraud Deion Sanders their Sportsperson of the Year.

▪ Sanders, meanwhile, is getting a taste of his own medicine now that some of his highly touted high school recruits have changed their minds about attending Colorado. Coach Prime lost three top-rated commits this past week.


▪ New York Post Hall of Fame hockey scribe Larry Brooks is pushing the Rangers to retire Brad Park’s No. 2. Park played 465 games over seven seasons for the Rangers before he was traded to the Bruins along with Jean Ratelle in 1975. Park wound up playing 501 games with the Bruins. He was named one of the NHL’s 100 greatest players in 2017.

Brad Park was on hand for centennial festivities at the Bruins opener in October.Barry Chin/Globe Staff

▪ The Athletic’s inimitable Tyler Kepner lists 10 MLB players who hold their franchise’s career record for hits but are not in the Hall of Fame: David Wright, Mets; Garret Anderson, Angels; Bert Campaneris, A’s; Luis Castillo, Marlins; Carl Crawford, Rays; Tony Fernandez, Blue Jays; Luis Gonzalez, Diamondbacks; Jimmy Rollins, Phillies; Michael Young, Rangers; Ryan Zimmerman, Nationals. The Reds’ Pete Rose (ineligible), The Rockies’ Todd Helton (likely to get in next month), and the Mariners’ Ichiro Suzuki (not yet eligible) are the other names on the list.

▪ Love the fact that Bobby Dalbec and Derrick White were teammates in both baseball and basketball at Legend High in Parker, Colo. White goes down as one of Brad Stevens’s greatest acquisitions. He has become an indispensable Celtics starter, maybe on a par with (dare we say?) Dennis Johnson.

▪ Numbers: Celtics numbers 00 (Robert Parish), 1 (Walter Brown), 2 (Red Auerbach), 3 (DJ), 5 (Kevin Garnett), and 6 (Russell) are retired. The other single digits are this year’s starters: 0 (Jayson Tatum), 4 (Jrue Holiday), 7 (Jaylen Brown), 8 (Kristaps Porzingis), and 9 (White).

▪ Bill Lee and Danny Ainge both finished their MLB careers with two home runs. The Spaceman believes there is something magical about his No. 37 because it also was worn by Jimmy Piersall.

▪ If you think the Aaron Rodgers countdown-to-comeback story is boring, how do you think the rest of America feels about the breathless Jones-or-Zappe question that engulfs the 2-9 Patriots? And Kraft, who really cares about things like this, has to be embarrassed to have his team flexed out of a Monday night Gillette game featuring Patrick Mahomes and maybe Taylor Swift.

▪ Five players went on to hit 45 or more homers in a single season after they played for the Red Sox. They are Babe Ruth, Brady Anderson, Jose Canseco, Carlos Pena, and Kyle Schwarber.

▪ After interviewing 98-year-old Marv Levy a couple of weeks ago, I learned that Marv was Bill Fitch’s basketball coach at Coe College in 1953-54. Levy also had a stint as football boss at William & Mary and lost to Boston College in 1965 and ’66.

▪ Commanders quarterback Sam Howell (better than Mac) has taken 55 sacks and is on a pace to finish with 78, which would be an NFL record.

Washington quarterback Sam Howell has been hitting the turf frequently.Adam Hunger/Associated Press

▪ The National League champion Arizona Diamondbacks are offering a season-ticket package at $299 for 83 home games (two exhibitions).

▪ Cowboys owner Jerry Jones finally relented and announced that former coach Jimmy Johnson (a Canton Hall of Famer) will be included in Dallas’s ring of honor. Things ended badly in Dallas between the two, but Jones finally did the right thing.

▪ In 2017, Harvard freshman Ben Abercrombie was paralyzed while playing his first college football game. The tragic injury inspired the Benson M. Abercrombie ‘21 Fund, in support of Ben and his family. Funds have helped Ben return to classes at Harvard.

Dec. 5 is the sixth annual Ben Abercrombie Day at El Jefe’s Taqueria in Harvard Square. Every sale that day goes directly to the fund. You also can also give to the Abercrombie fund at any time by going to bit.ly/32Abercrombie.

▪ Quiz answer: Matthew Stafford, Nick Foles, Peyton Manning, Russell Wilson, Joe Flacco.

Dan Shaughnessy is a Globe columnist. He can be reached at daniel.shaughnessy@globe.com. Follow him @dan_shaughnessy.