‘He’s the standard’: Sean McDermott clarified earlier comments about Bill Belichick

"It’s so hard to beat his team."

Sean McDermott Belichick
Sean McDermott prior to the Bills-Patriots game on Sunday. AP Photo/Winslow Townson

The Patriots lost to the Bills 33-21 on Sunday, falling behind Buffalo in the AFC East as a result. New England will face the Jaguars on Jan. 2, attempting to end the team’s two-game losing streak.

Tonight, the Celtics are in Minnesota to face the Timberwolves at 8 p.m.

Sean McDermott’s postgame thoughts on Bill Belichick: After the Patriots defeated the Bills 14-10 on Dec. 6, Bills coach Sean McDermott drew attention for his postgame comments.

“Let’s not give more credit than we need to give credit to Bill Belichick in this one,” McDermott said after losing the game. “Whether it’s Bill or anybody else, they beat us. You sit here and you tell me when we start with the average starting field position at the 40-yard line and he starts [at] the 23-yard line—I’m rounding up in both cases—and we were 1-4 in the red zone, and they were 0-1 in the red zone. You give me that ahead [of the game], I’m sorry, I like my chances.


“With all due respect, it’s not a Bill Belichick-type thing,” McDermott added. “It’s, ‘What are you doing with the opportunities you’ve got?'”

Following the rematch on Sunday, in which McDermott’s team responded by posting a win of its own, the Bills head coach had some additional thoughts about his earlier quotes, which he conveyed to Sports Illustrated NFL reporter Albert Breer.

“I’ll talk about that quote, first of all,” McDermott said of his earlier comments. “I know what I meant to say, and I have the utmost respect for Bill. And it was more about what I and our team didn’t do. And things sometimes take on a life of their own, I guess. But look, Bill Belichick makes me a better coach. He’s the standard. And so he just … he challenges even the opposite coach to continue to grow. It’s so hard to beat his team.”

The Bills now lead the Patriots in the AFC East, though a potential third matchup is possible depending on how the playoff picture looks in two weeks time.

Trivia: Cowboys rookie Micah Parsons now has 13 sacks through 15 games. Who holds the NFL record for most sacks in a single season by a rookie?


(Answer at the bottom).

Hint: He lost that year in Super Bowl XXXIV.

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On this day: In 1989, Larry Bird led the Celtics past Danny Ainge and the Kings in a 115-112 overtime win. Bird scored 37 points, adding 11 rebounds and 10 assists to complete a triple-double.

Ainge, having been traded by Boston to Sacramento earlier in the year, put up 39 points against his old team. In the end, however, Bird and the Celtics’ rebounding was too much, helping the team improve to 16-11 while the Kings fell to 6-20.

Daily highlight: Leandro Trossard gave Brighton & Hove Albion the lead in Sunday’s 2-0 win over Brentford with an exquisite chip over the goalkeeper.

Trivia answer: Jevon Kearse


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