Morning sports update: Tony Romo explained what separates Bill Belichick from other NFL coaches

"Bill Belichick, he’s not going to go into a game feeling like we don’t have answers."

Bill Belichick
Bill Belichick at Patriots minicamp in 2019. –AP

Chris Sale earned his first win at Fenway Park since 2018 with a dominant 12-strikeout performance against the Blue Jays on Thursday afternoon as the Red Sox won 5-0.

Boston continues its schedule of A.L East opponents with a game in Baltimore on Friday against the Orioles at 7:05 p.m.

Tony Romo shared some thoughts on Bill Belichick: Known for his insight on television, NFL commentator and former quarterback Tony Romo wasn’t exactly taking an unpopular position when he praised Bill Belichick in a recent interview. Still, Romo zeroed in on what specifically makes Belichick special.

“He’s rare,” Romo said in an interview with 105.3 “The Fan” radio in Dallas. “A lot of times I will ask coaches and other people certain questions that I know are probably a little bit difficult, but it kind of shows me real quick whether or not they have answers.”

Advertisement

“Bill Belichick, he’s not going to go into a game feeling like we don’t have answers, and when I say that, everyone says he’s going to take away what you do best, they think he’s going to double team the opponents best player,” Romo continued. “I’m like, ‘No, you have to understand, he’s taking away the inside run while he’s taking away the inside receivers — Antonio Brown or someone.’ It’s like, they know he’s going to take away Antonio Brown, but he takes away multiple things and he does it differently the next time he plays you from different looks.”

Romo praised the Patriots Super Bowl LIII game plan as “one of the greatest defensive performances I have ever seen in football.”

Belichick, in Romo’s opinion, separates himself from other NFL coaches not merely for his creativity, but his confidence to occasionally implement a system that goes against conventional wisdom.

“He genuinely is not scared to go outside the box,” Romo explained. “And I find in the NFL very few teams vary from what they do. So what he does then is he drafts people that he believes can adapt from week-to-week.”

Advertisement

Trivia: Bill Belichick began his NFL coaching career in 1975 with the Baltimore Colts as an assistant. Who was the team’s head coach that year?

(Answer at the bottom).

Hint: Eventually he would become offensive coordinator for the Buffalo Bills, helping the team develop its version of the hurry-up offense (the “K-Gun” system). Yet he fell short of a championship, as his Bills’ offense lost in Super Bowl XXV to Belichick’s Giants defense.

More from Boston.com:

Danny Ainge is still competing against top-level opposition:

Speaking of Danny Ainge, some Celtics news:

Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg collected multiple hits in the same inning, including a 420-foot home run:

Buy Tickets

On this day: In 1980, the Summer Olympics opened in Moscow, but the United States and 65 other nations weren’t there. Because of the Soviet military operation in Afghanistan, U.S. President Jimmy Carter and other world leaders decided to boycott the Olympics.

The effect and legacy of the decision remains polarizing. It wasn’t the first major Olympic boycott, though: 28 African nations skipped the 1976 Montreal games because New Zealand’s rugby team had broken with the international sporting embargo on apartheid South Africa.

There was a Boston-related legacy of the boycott. Lisa Rainsberger, who won the 1985 Boston Marathon, was initially going to be an Olympic swimmer. The sudden announcement that the U.S. team was not going to Moscow caused a change in plans, so Rainsberger took up running to stay in shape. She eventually fell in love with the sport.

When asked if she would have ended up in running — and at the Boston Marathon — had it not been for the 1980 Olympic boycott, Rainsberger said, “I never would have, no.”

Advertisement

“There’s always a blessing in disguise out of that,” she told Boston.com in a 2017 interview. Though her Olympic dreams were dashed, it started the road toward victory in Boston.

Daily highlight: Chris Sale didn’t need a lot of help on Thursday, but Xander Bogaerts was there when his teammate needed it.

Bonus: Earlier this week, French BMX rider Valentin Anouilh added his name to the distinguished list of those who have jumped the Tour de France peloton. The 19-year-old cleared the gap with ease and style, producing a breathtaking video:

Trivia answer: Ted Marchibroda