Dan Shaughnessy — There you go. This is what you get for playing half-buttocks football in Miami against the ready-to-go-home Dolphins in the final game of the regular season.
The genius of Bill Belichick did not extend to Sunday of the divisional-round weekend. …
The Patriots will never admit this, but New England’s “smarter-than-you” blueprint called for the Steelers to beat the Broncos in Denver and advance to Foxborough for next weekend’s AFC Championship game.
It did not happen. …
It did not have to go down like this. All the Patriots had to do was beat Dan Campbell and Ryan Tannehill in the finale.
But they made a choice. And now they will be on the road, playing the AFC Championship game in their own personal house of horror.
I’ve got to hand it to Shank. It can’t be easy these days to find ways to rip the Patriots for their — all together now — arrogance, or Bill Belichick for not having the football smarts of a newspaper columnist. But he managed to. Granted, he said it one day after calling them the gold standard of excellence in sports. But when you’re still pumping that well of negativity that went dry in 2001 because you’ve got no other hot sports take, you really have no other choice.
So that we have it straight: The Patriots didn’t lose in Miami because they were so banged up. The lack of Julian Edelman and a limited Danny Amendola was not a factor. It wasn’t a system-wide failure along a depleted offensive line that made it impossible for Tom Brady to stand in the pocket. It had nothing to do with the Pats‘ ineffectiveness running the ball against a Dolphins defense that was loaded up against the pass and daring them to run.
They lost on purpose because it was all part of Belichick’s “smarter-than-you” master plan to have the Steelers beat the Bengals on two galactically stupid penalties, then watch Pittsburgh roll into Denver and knock off the Broncos, thus doing his dirty work for him. By Dan’s logic, Amendola, Rob Ninkovich, Devin McCourty and Pat Chung dragged themselves off the injury list and into that game even though the plan all along was to lose in order to set the playoff dominoes to fall according to his grand design. Except Denver won, proving what a dumb-buttocks he really is. Makes perfect sense to me.
Like I said, it can’t be easy to be the Curly-Haired Boyfriend in an age like this. He owes his career to the miserable, downtrodden teams and nut-crushing losses he grew up covering. And now, faced with unprecedented levels of success in a league designed to prevent long-term, sustained excellence, he’s never figured out how to adapt. He’s a communist party apparatchik after the fall of the Soviet Union struggling to embrace the freedom and democracy of the decadent West he always hated.
If the Pats should win another Super Bowl and Shaughnessy is further exposed as the trolling fraud he is, at least he’ll have a paper route to fall back on.
DraftKings has your shot to play for FREE in the $1 Million Fantasy Football Contest THIS SUNDAY! First place takes home $100,000! FOR FREE ENTRY, CLICK HERE.