If Bill Belichick and Peyton Manning were on the same team….
Bill Belichick and Peyton Manning have faced each other 20 times with Belichick winning 12 of those match ups! Being in the same conference, they have stood in each other’s path to get to the Super Bowl and between them they have made it to 10 of the last 16 Superbowls and won 6 of them! The match ups were always advertised as Manning Vs Brady, but the shutout loss suffered by the Houston Texans against the Patriots this week shows that Belichick is really the key person for the Patriots!
For starters, the Pats were playing a very good Texans defense with a rookie third string quarterback and still managed to score 27 points. The more impressive thing is that Belichick was so confident in his game plan that he did not even care to sign a veteran backup QB as insurance in case Brissett got injured. He was more than willing to continue the game with Julian Edelman, who has not played QB since college several years ago!
I don’t want to take anything away from Tom Brady, who is an elite HOF QB in his own right. However, I feel that there is no guarantee he would have developed into the player he is without Belichick recognizing his talent and coaching to his strengths.
Take a look at the career of Matt Cassell for instance. He had a banner year when he stepped in to replace an injured Brady failed to have the same level of success outside New England. Peyton, on the other hand, played on relatively less talented teams in Indy and often lifted the performance of his teams significantly.
Manning’s offensive mind combined with Belichick’s defensive (rather overall football) genius would have established a dynasty like no other. Unfortunately, we can only imagine, “What if…?”