Try out as he may, Invoice Belichick will not likely be capable to escape the matter of Aaron Hernandez this year.
Invoice Belichick drafted Aaron Hernandez 3 a long time ago even with serious queries about his character. He absolutely gave owner Robert Kraft his endorsement to indicator Hernandez to a $ 40 million deal extension very last summer season, which integrated a $ 12.5 million reward, so he genuinely seems distraught by Hernandez currently being charged with murder and exactly where it all went wrong.
He employed the phrases dissatisfied, stunned and damage on Wednesday in describing his inner thoughts and sense of responsibility for bringing Hernandez into what has been viewed as the NFL’s product franchise. He spoke from what appeared to be a heartfelt, geared up statement for about 15 minutes in his initial comments considering that Hernandez was arrested and speedily cut from the Patriots in late June and then answered a handful of queries, deflecting these that could be interpreted as commenting on the legal proceedings.
“We’ve labored really difficult in excess of 14 a long time to place collectively a team that is a pillar in the community,” he mentioned. “This situation includes an specific who took place to be a New England Patriot. We undoubtedly do not condone unacceptable conduct. This does not in any way represent the way that the New England Patriots want to do items. As the coach of the staff, I’m mostly responsible for the folks we deliver into the football operation.”
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Just as Belichick was a couple of minutes into his assertion at his pre-training camp information meeting, Hernandez appeared in a courtroom about twenty minutes absent — unshaven, in handcuffs, a athletics coat, but no tie. It was practically surreal as NFL Network split the monitor: Belichick talking about Hernandez on the remaining, Hernandez on the right, motionless.
Aaron Hernandez seems in courtroom just as Bill Belichick addresses the media about the previous Patriots tight stop.
Belichick does not even like to discuss about hamstring injuries, so speaking about some thing as ghastly as one particular of his players getting billed with murder was painful, but he is sensible sufficient to know nothing at all he states will avoid the Hernandez scenario from haunting his crew this season. So he did his greatest to portray his thoughts and did a great task, in no way mentioning Hernandez by title.
He took accountability for making what turned out to be a massive misjudgment of character when assessing Hernandez. “Most of the conclusions have worked out. Some really do not,” he explained. “Overall, I’m proud of the hundreds of players who have arrive through the program. I am individually disappointed and damage in a situation like this.”
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The Patriots will perform their conditioning assessments Thursday early morning, and then very last year’s captains, such as Tom Brady, will deal with the media. Brady said earlier this 7 days that he has “moved on” from Hernandez, but which is not realistic. Even although Hernandez was minimize considerably less than an hour following he was arrested and prior to the murder costs have been even unveiled, it is heading to be impossible for the Pats to escape his shadow this year.
Belichick obviously made a mistake with Hernandez, but teams get probabilities in the draft all the time. Probably he dependable the Patriots Way way too much, believing that when a participant will get into his locker space, the veteran leadership will guarantee he doesn’t stray as well significantly. With a number of former Gators on the Patriots, probably Belichick place too a lot believe in in his good pal, former Florida coach City Meyer. Or maybe he felt empowered by his Tremendous Bowl rings to get a opportunity on a participant other groups crossed off the board.
Bill Belichick would seem truly distraught above the Aaron Hernandez predicament.
That currently being said, if Belichick had any notion that Hernandez was capable of possessing such a dark side, he never ever would have drafted him. As considerably perform and income as teams put into locating out every little thing they perhaps can about a participant just before investing a dollar in him, it is still difficult to task how they will conduct themselves off the discipline, despite the incessant warnings and education the groups and the league provide.
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The Hernandez scenario will pressure the Patriots, and the other 31 teams, to consider a nearer appear at how they consider gamers and just how much they are ready to stray to just take a character threat. “We’ll learn from this terrible expertise,” Belichick said. “We’ll turn out to be a far better crew from the lessons that we’ve discovered.”
Belichick expressed his sympathy for the loved ones of Odin Lloyd and described how this is a “really unhappy working day on so many amounts.”
The Patriots will hold their first training camp practice Friday early morning. By then, Belichick hopes it’s all about soccer. But he knows far better. “I’ve been advised to tackle this subject matter as soon as, and it’s time for the New England Patriots to transfer forward. Moving forward is made up of what it is often been right here: To create a winning soccer group, to be a powerful pillar in the group, be a group that our supporters can be happy of,” Belichick mentioned. “That’s what we are right here for.”
Right up until lately, that has often been the Patriots Way.