Bill Belichick catching up to Don Shula
With the Miami Dolphins coming to Gillette tomorrow afternoon there's some talk about Bill Belichick and Don Shula's legacy. Shula, who has the record for most wins as a coach 343, is considered one of, if not the greatest coach of all time. However, Belichick is very close to Shula, and by 2023 he could pass him as the winningest coach in NFL history. It was a different game when Shula coached, and has evolved so much since then. Shula coached 33 years in the NFL, and was 328-156 with a .677 win percentage. In the playoffs, he was 19-17 with a .528 win percentage. As for Belichick, he is 273-126 with a win percentage of .684. In the playoffs, he's 31-11 with a .738 win percentage. There's still a ways to go for Belichick, but he will catch up to Shula.
People from Miami don't want to admit Belichick is a great coach
People from Miami will say Belichick will never be Shula because of the cheating allegations. That excuse gets old when they forget about the big picture. One of the reasons the Patriots won three out of four in the early 2000s was because the team was built in the 90s. Bill Parcells drafted half those early Super Bowl-winning teams, but they were just missing some key pieces. Belichick drafted Tom Brady in 2000 and the rest is history. They didn't need to cheat to win the Super Bowl. They had a great team and were just missing some pieces.
Belichick has integrity too. He does what is best for the team every week. It doesn't matter how long you've been with the Patriots, everyone is treated the same. That is why they are successful every single season. People from Miami want to talk about Spygate and say Shula never did anything to gain a competitive advantage illegally. There are plenty of rumors about Shula demanding his players take addictive painkillers to play.
There's no doubt Belichick is chasing Shula's record even though he'll never admit it. Belichick has adapted to the change of the game year after year. His willingness to win and treat every opponent the same is critical, especially with the horrible AFC East. It can be argued this is why he'll go down as the greatest coach of all time. People from Miami will bash the Patriots and Belichick constantly. But it will mean the world for Belichick to go to Miami in Super LIV and win it this year.
His playoff record is better than Shula's too. He's won more Super Bowls and been to more. At the end of his coaching career, we will say Bill Belichick is the greatest coach ever in the NFL.