Patriots

‘What are those?’: Bill Belichick discussed texting with emojis, friendship with Alex Cora

Belichick also added thoughts on Marathon Monday, Stephon Gilmore, Dak Prescott, and Tom Brady.

Bill Belichick
Bill Belichick during the Patriots-Texans game. AP Photo/Justin Rex

With an October Boston Marathon adding to an already busy schedule of local sports, Bill Belichick has taken notice.

As he joined WEEI’s “The Greg Hill Show” on Monday morning for his weekly interview, the Patriots’ coach noted the circumstances as the Red Sox also prepare to host the Rays for Game 4 of the American League Division Series.

“Must be exciting down there, Marathon Monday in October, [Major League Baseball] playoffs, it’s quite a day,” Belichick said.

Here are few takeaways from Belichick’s interview a day after the Patriots rallied to beat the Texans, 25-22:

His encouraging text to Alex Cora.

Prior to beating the Yankees in the American League Wild Card Game, Red Sox manager Alex Cora said that he got a text message from Belichick wishing him luck.

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“That’s like the highlight of the year,” Cora said of Belichick’s message. “I got the text from this random area code. That’s cool, to be honest with you, for somebody of his status to wish us luck.”

When it was insinuated that Belichick’s message played a role in Boston’s eventual win, Belichick seemed skeptical.

“I don’t know about that,” he replied.

“We’ve been friends for a while,” Belichick added of Cora, “and I really respect what he does and what he’s brought to the Sox.”

The Red Sox hold a 2-1 series lead over the Rays in the ALDS after a 6-4 win in extra innings on Sunday night.

“I’ve enjoyed our relationship and looks like he’s doing fine,” Belichick explained. “He’s got a good team and they played well, got a big win.”

Asked if he uses emojis when texting, Belichick gave an expected response.

“What are those?”

The last word on Stephon Gilmore.

Having traded cornerback Stephon Gilmore to the Panthers on Oct. 6, the Patriots can now anticipate seeing the 31-year-old on the schedule when New England faces Carolina in Week 9.

“That’s kind of the business side of the NFL,” Belichick said of the contractual situation with Gilmore. “We’ve already talked about that and we’ve moved on.”

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But while Gilmore is gone, his legacy — helping the team win Super Bowl LIII, among other accomplishments — remains.

“I think the world of Steph,” added Belichick, “appreciate everything he did here.”

On preparing for Dak Prescott, with a nod to Tom Brady.

The Patriots will face the Cowboys in Week 6 (4:25 p.m.) at Gillette Stadium. To stop Dallas, Belichick’s defense will have to find a way to slow down Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott.

But is Prescott the toughest quarterback the Patriots have had to prepare for so far in the 2021 season?

“There are a lot of great players in this league, but you really have to prepare for an entire team,” Belichick noted. “You just can’t prepare for one guy.”

“There are a lot of things that Dallas does well,” Belichick said. “Just like there are a lot of things that Tampa does well, just like there are a lot of things that Houston does well, so you have to totally prepare for each team and defend those players that they have out there and schemes that they run.

“But I don’t think we’ll see anybody better than Tom Brady,” Belichick said. “But Dak does somethings that Tom doesn’t do. Tom does some things that Dak doesn’t do. The skill players are different, the lines are different, so it’s really about defending the team, not just one person, although you have to be aware of defending individual players’ skills.”

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