Sports | April 13, 2022 3:32 pm

No, Bill Belichick Didn’t Mean to Text Ex-Miami Coach Brian Flores to Blow Up Tom Brady Going to the Dolphins

Belichick is probably pleased Brady didn't end up in the AFC East with the Patriots but he didn't prevent it from happening

Ex-Miami coach Brian and Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots shake hands
Ex-Miami coach Brian Flores and Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots shake hands.
Mark Brown/Getty

At the very top of the lawsuit that ex-Dolphins head coach Brian Flores filed on the afternoon of February 1 against the NFL and its 32 teams alleging racist hiring practices that discriminate against Black coaches were texts Patriots coach Bill Belichick sent to the plaintiff congratulating him for getting a job with the New York Giants. As the suit details, Belichick meant to send those texts to former Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll, who had been announced as the coach of the Giants days before. The problem? The timing of the texts indicate Belichick knew the Giants had already decided to hire Daboll even though Flores hadn’t interviewed with the team yet, making his interview with the team a sham and evidence of racist hiring practices.

So what does all that have to do with Tom Brady? Prior to those texts being sent and Flores filing his lawsuit, Miami owner Stephen Ross was allegedly planning to offer Brady, who announced he was walking away from the Bucs on the morning of February 1, a high-ranking position in the front office with the Dolphins and hire former Saints head coach Sean Payton to run the team. Once the smoke cleared and Tampa Bay had a new quarterback in place, the plan was for Brady to step down from the front office and get back on the field to play for the Dolphins, the division rivals of Belichick and the Patriots. When Flores filed his lawsuit using Belichick’s texts as evidence, that messed up everything.

“The plan to hire a white coach and a white team president without going through the Rooney Rule probably wouldn’t fly once the Dolphins were sued for racial discrimination,” per The Boston Globe. “Flores’s accusations of tanking and tampering put the issue of cellphones and discovery at play for Ross and Brady. The lawsuit simply brought too much heat to the situation, and Ross and Brady had to call off the arrangement. With his plans with the Dolphins blown up, Brady was left with two choices: stay retired without knowing what he was going to do with his life or return to football.”

As we know now, Brady chose the latter and is returning to the NFL with the Buccaneers, not the Dolphins — which was Belichick’s master plan all along.

Ridiculous as that sounds, that has actually been a theory that has been floated by some “In Bill We Trust” believers in recent days on Boston sports radio and in some far corners of the internet. Basically, the theory is that Belichick knew his Larry David-style accidental texts would help set Flores’s lawsuit in motion and derail Brady’s plan of heading to the Dolphins, which the 69-year-old also somehow knew about.

As hard as it is to believe that some people actually think Belichick was able to execute the accidental text plan, it’s even harder to believe that he actually did it on purpose. He made a lucky mistake, that’s it. There may have been a time when Belichick was playing chess while everyone else was playing checkers, but these days he’s having a hard enough time coaching football.