Ex-Patriots Wes Welker, Aqib Talib, and Brandon Spikes are gone, and all three have either criticized BB, ridiculed the Patriot Way, and/or have accused BB of falsifying injury reports. I say, goodbye and good riddance to these three bitter ingrates. Why refer do I refer to them as "ingrates"?
1.) Wes Welker: Welker was to begin the 2007 NFL season as an obscure slot receiver playing for the terrible Miami Dolphins, who were just being taken over by "Mr. Fail Fast First", Cam Cameron. That Miami team would narrowly escape the ignominy of an 0-16 season.
BB spared Welker from that fate, when BB traded his second and seventh round draft choices for Wes...who at the time had been a restricted FA. This resulted in Wes getting a raise, getting to play with the best QB of all-time, and getting to play for one of the best teams in the game. Wes would both blossom and flourish in New England, as he set himself up for a huge pay day as an UFA in 2013, at age 32.
Though the Patriots had offered Wes a two year, $16mil. deal in 2012, he turned it down. In 2013, the Patriots reduced their offer to approximately a two year, $12mil. deal. Wes spurned that offer as well, and ended up signing with the Denver Broncos for approximately the same amount of money that the Patriots had initially offered to him.
As a result of his six (6) years with BB in New England, Wes became a star, and a wealthy man. One has to wonder if any of this would have come to pass, had he not had been liberated from Miami? Yet...after leaving for Denver, he has repeatedly dissed BB for being paranoid and a control freak, especially in regards to players talking with the media.
2.) Aqib Talib: Talib, a #1 draft pick by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2008, had seen his career in tatters due to injuries, off-field stupidity, and the lethargy that can result from years of playing for a bad team. Desperate for help at CB during the 2012 season, BB took a chance by trading Tampa a 4th round draft choice for Talib, at the mid-season point.
To Talib's credit, he awarded BB for the opportunity of going from a terrible Tampa team to the contending Patriots by quickly learning the Pats defensive system, and contributing pro-bowl caliber play. The Pats rewarded him in 2013 with a one year, $5mil., prove it over a full season deal. Again, to his credit, Talib justified BB's faith in him by performing at a pro-bowl level, staying out of trouble, being a model player, and a team leader. On more than one occasion, BB, not one known to hand out compliments to his players, praised Talib to the hilt for his efforts.
Thus, Talib put himself in a position to hit the jackpot in free agency, going into the 2014 season. The Patriots, concerned over Talib's durability, were hesitant to offer a huge money, long term deal. Instead, the Denver Broncos would step up, and igned Talib to a 6 year, $57mil. deal.
Though Talib had made it well known after the 2013 season that he had wished to remain a Patriot, almost immediately after signing with Denver, he began criticized BB. Most recently, Talib accused BB of falsifying injury reports, claiming that he hadn't had a hip injury problem since his early days in Tampa. Yet, we who watched him play, and saw him waddle off the field hurt, suspect differently: http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2014/03/19/spikes-talib-say-patriots-file-false-injury-reports/
3.) Brandon Spikes: During the 2010 NFL draft, many "experts" had predicted that Spikes would slip significantly down the draft board, due to him having ran a very slow (4.99) forty at the Combine. Yet, BB would select Spikes with his second round pick (62nd overall). As a result, Spikes got paid fairly well, as opposed to how he would have been paid as a 5th round pick. Spikes jutified BB's faith in him with solid play as a run-stuffing ILB.
But, character issues had begun to surface from the get-go. First, there was that pornographic video Spikes was in, that was on You-tube. Next, Spikes began to be a disciplinary problem by being late for team meetings, and being the only player to fail to appear at "voluntary" workouts.
Last season, Spikes suffered a knee injury midway through the season. Though he continued to play in pain, it clearly was effecting the quality of his play. Finally, after he was late for a team meeting, a decision was made to place him on IR. Though being late for the meeting likely played a part in this decision, it was obvious that he was severly limited due to the bum knee. Already not the swiftest of LBs, the knee slowed him even more...and opposing teams were beginning to take advantage.
Thus, the decision was made to allow Spikes to leave through free agency. About week ago, he signed a one year, $3.25mil. deal to play for the rival Buffalo Bills.
Thereafter, rather than thank BB for giving him the opportunity of playing for a great team, and prove that he could play well enough to merit $3.25 million for a years worth of play, he too chose to accuse BB of falsifying injury reports, claiming that BB had placed him on IR for disciplanary reasons, only. Again, Patriots fans who watched him play late last season know that he was severly hampered due to his bum knee.
The bottom line is that all three of these guys achieved wealth and fame, thanks primarily to BB. BB rescued Wes Welker from a disaster in Miami. Getting to play in the New England system with Tom Brady transformed Wes into a star. BB may have literally saved Aqib Talib's career. Spikes might have been selected far later in the draft than 62nd overall. With his speed dificiencies, who knows how well he would have performed, had he played for a lesser team...coached by a lesser coach.
Shame on all three of these ingrates...and...good riddance!