Patriots Lose In OT After Winning Coin Toss And Deferring, Twitter Reacts
In a rare case of complete and utter fuck-up-ery by Bill Belichick, the New England Patriots decided to defer possession after winning the coin toss in overtime against the New York Jets.
Not only was it a massive, probably game-changing screw up that led to the Jets' 26-20 win, the resulting loss was fairly consequential for the Patriots as they could have locked up the one-seed and homefield througout the playoffs with a win.
With 1:55 left in the fourth quarter, Tom Brady led the Patriots 66 yards down the field for the game-tying touchdown. The Pats offense looked like they were finally gaining some momentum after struggling mightily for most of the game, and we can be sure that Brady was ready and eager to take the field. Which is why the ensuing decision to kick off to the Jets rather than receive the ball, which Bill Belichick asserts was purposeful and not mistaken, is even more perplexing.
You can see that during the coin toss, as Andrew Siciliano points out, special teams captain and five-time Pro Bowler Matthew Slater seems to state the decision with clarity.
ESPN's Adam Schefter tweeted a transcript of the exchange between Slater and the head referee, in which it seems like Slater is confused about wanting to kick. But in the video above you can see that he's actually just confused as to why they didn't get to pick the direction of the kick, so the transcript itself is a bit misleading.
If you are a conspiracy theorist, Bill Simmons is here for you - as per usual - with a red hot take that only a true homer could buy into.
It's tempting to consider the possibility that Belichick half-intentionally threw a game against the Jets to help ensure their playoff chances, but it's not even remotely possible. There are still way too many other things that need to happen for the Jets to hold onto that spot.
The truth of the matter is, we may never know what the hell Belichick was thinking. He's not exactly known to be forthcoming, and his disdain for the people who would report that kind of information makes it difficult for them to glean any actual news.
And so, we must yet again rely on the best of Twitter's reaction to the entire debacle. Complete with Steve Harvey googley eyes, of course.
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