What does Merriam-Webster say desperate means?
“Utter loss of hope”
What does success mean?
It means that you don’t put up with shit.
I’m new to this, but I spent the last few days in New England. You know, Connecticut, Boston, quaint, folksy, covered bridges, and the rest? You know what they’re good at? Winning. They win a lot. This is not to say that they have never lost, let us not forget, the Patriots were once so desperate that they hired a coach that had been fired by the Browns. The Browns! (I know that’s a different franchise then the current troupe of disaster, but it was still the Browns.) Winning is a learned art, and that same coach that had been fired by the Browns, changed all of Boston sports by changing the culture of sports in Boston.
You know how Belichick does it so well? One phrase. “Do your job.” Little children from Hartford to Bridgeport dream of getting the chance to do their job for the holy trinity, Kraft, Belichick, and Brady. But what does that phrase actually mean? It means that you never put your own personal vices in opposition to the teams goals. A good team is not a collection of individuals, it is one heartbeat. A good team is one that doesn’t put up with shit.
There’s a very recent example of Belichick doing what’s right for the team even while upsetting a star in the moment. Alex Guerrero is Tom Brady’s personal trainer and business partner, together they have crafted the TB12 brand. Belichick effectively banned Guerrero from team access. For a guy that previously traveled with the team and was on the sidelines, this is a huge jump. This is not to say that I know why Guerrero was stripped. But I will say this, Guerrero and Brady have caught flak for years, everything from regulatory issues to questions with the NFL about payments and cap hits. No matter what, Belichick saw this building as a distraction and he cut it out.
In this same vein I can praise a move by a Minnesota team, the Vikings. This past offseason, they jettisoned Adrian Peterson, Cordarrelle Patterson, and Alex Boone going into the regular season. What do all of them have in common? They were distractions. Boone? The guy was boisterous to such a negative degree, he was too focused on optics, he didn’t just do his job. Patterson? He finally got his rear in gear as a gunner last year, but before that? I can’t tell you how many times his effort was questions. And Peterson? Hell I don’t know where to start with him. All of these moves were addition by subtraction. This year, the RB mess, the QB mess? All of it doesn’t matter, because these guys are locked and loaded, nothing distracts them. They are a team!
Why does this matter? Well, there’s a new problem in town, and Falvey and Levine could learn a lesson from their crosstown compatriots. Miguel Sano has been one my favorite players the last few years, but no more. Following the original allegation there have been more and more reports of wrongdoing, and I tip my cap to the Twins writers and bloggers in town because they have been more than diligent on this matter. I’m not going to pretend I’m a GM and say that I know exactly how Falvine should thread this needle. Maybe it’s a trade, maybe it’s release. I just know as an end result, I do not want Miguel Sano on the roster come March 29th in Baltimore.
No split is easy, and there will always be people that raise a ruckus, but if we’re going to have a winning team, if we’re going to have a winning culture in this state – we can’t put up with shit like this.
Do. Your. Job.