Could this be the beginning of the end of the NFL’s most successful dynasty?
A rumored rift between New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, coach Bill Belichick, and owner Robert Craft, all of whom interestingly have been vocal or non-vocal supporters of President Trump at one time or another, was revealed in a bombshell ESPN report released on Friday.
And oddly enough, it’s not Deflate-gate, or Spy-gate, or any of the other controversies the team has endured over the years that’s caused the tension, but rather Tom Brady’s trainer and business partner, Alex Guerrero.
In the report, ESPN’s Seth Wickersham described Guerrero as a trainer and nutritionist with a “sketchy background” who began working with the Patriots quarterback in 2004. His methods, however, weren’t exactly mainstream. Delving into what Guerrero calls “muscle pliability,” Brady reportedly hopes to use the techniques to play well into his 40’s, and even partnered with the trainer to found TB12 Sports Therapy Center and write a book together in 2017 titled, “The TB12 Method.”
At first, Belichick was on board with Guerrero and granted him access to Patriots’ facilities because he felt like the entire team could benefit, but it didn’t take long for that relationship to sour.
Wilkersham writes: “New players felt the surest way to earn Brady’s trust was to join Rob Gronkowski, Danny Amendola and others by seeking advice from Guerrero at his TB12 clinic — and not team doctors, which Belichick preferred … But according to multiple sources, players openly discussed with Patriots coaches, staff and trusted advisers whether to follow Brady or the team, leaving them trapped: Do we risk alienating the NFL’s most powerful coach or risk alienating the NFL’s most powerful quarterback?”
The report stated that the Patriots coach tried talking the matter over with his quarterback, to no avail. Eventually, Belichick revoked Guerrero’s access to the sidelines and Patriots headquarters, choosing instead to allow the trainer to work with players who specifically asked for him. This led to some players feeling like Belichick was preventing them from working with the trainer.
Another ongoing controversy between the two involved Brady’s potential heir, backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. Since Brady intended to play forever, he naturally saw no need to keep Garoppolo, but Belichick saw the talent and wanted the now-San Francisco 49ers QB to eventually succeed Brady.
Team owner Robert Kraft took Brady’s side in the matter and insisted that the coach trade Garoppolo.
Some political observers following the story have suspicions that it may be politically motivated.
— Linda S (@LinSapCT) January 6, 2018
As to where the team goes from here, it’s unclear. Both coordinators could reportedly be in the running for head coaching gigs, and Brady has no heir apparent. If Guerrero’s methods allow Brady to play past the age any other NFL quarterback would even dream of playing, they’ll be fine.
But Belichick is obviously more than a little doubtful and, unfortunately for the Patriots – if anything can be unfortunate for a team that’s won as many Super Bowls as this one – he’s got history, common sense, and science on his side.
Either way, Wickersham wrote that people in the organization think “something has to change.”
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Any op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of BizPac Review.
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