The rumors have started flying around thick and fast with regards to the future of New England Patriots’ Bill Belichick. If for any reason the five-time Super Bowl champion decided his time was up at the franchise, the bounty that any team interested in his services would be a mighty one indeed.
It is understood that Belichick is still very much under contract with the team and that his contract may be for many more years. With that being said, anyone taking Belichick as coach will be giving up draft picks, that’s a given but, just how many? Reports have it that Robert Kraft, owner of the Patriots would want, wait for it, nothing less than three first rounders.
An NFL executive commented: “You think Robert Kraft became a millionaire and runs the best organization in the league and he’s just going to lay down and say, ‘We’re going to let you have him?’” Nope, he’ll be saying I want: “Three No. 1 draft picks.”
Even for a super coach like Belichick that would be a bit of an ask, he’s also getting on in years and is now at a ripe old age of 65.
It was hinted at last week that Belichick would relish a shot at the New York Giants before he retires and with the clock ticking now would be as good a time as any. The Giants also have no aversion to having a coach getting up there in age, remember Tom Coughlin?
As of now the largest compensation deal that was paid out for a head coach was in 2002. Tampa Bay Buccaneers did a deal with the Oakland Raiders for two first-round picks, two second-round picks and $8 million for the services of head coach Jon Gruden.
Belichick’s history with New York is not great, in 2000 he joined and departed the New York Jets within a space of 24 hours, this lead to the Patriots having to give up a first round pick. The two teams went at it again when the Jets said ‘NO’ to the Patriots when they asked for the No. 1 overall pick in the 1997 draft for another superstar coach in Bill Parcells. The Jets ended up giving the Pats third- and fourth-round picks in 1997, a second-round pick in 1998 and a first-round pick in 1999.
By now you can see that the Patriots are no strangers to the trade merry-go-round, but if this was to happen it would be the biggest shock in NFL trade history for sure.