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Everybody enjoys their Thursday night differently. I have friends who line dance at a bar, others who curl up with Netflix, and a slew of people who watch the NFL's weekly Thursday contest. If Bill Belichick has his way, at least according to Robert Kraft, fans of the Patriots could be rooting for the home team on Thursdays a bit more often.
Kraft says Bill Belichick 'likes the Thursday night games and would be happy to have more than one in a season.' #Patriots
— Marc Sessler (@MarcSesslerNFL) July 17, 2014
As far as I know, Kraft has never once been proven inaccurate in speaking on his coach's behalf, so I'm going to go ahead and take his word for it. So does Belichick just like sleeping in on Friday, or is he sad he's missing out on Sunday Funday with his friends? Of all the speculation, three of the theories seem to hold the most water. Belichick either likes the coaching advantage of a short week, the rest his players receive in what is essentially a bonus bye week after the game, or he is being a master manipulator and hates the games.
The short week many teams enter the Thursday contest with (I'd say all, but I'm sure some enter after byes)has seemed to create sloppier game play due to the reduced practice week. If there is any coach who would be able to get the most out of their team over a few days it would be the hoodie. So I see the merit of this argument, but I tend to think the next is the most fundamentally sound.
Regardless of any advantage to his superior coaching and preparation, Belichick understands how valuable rest and fundamentals can be to the success of a team. This additional bye week of sorts from the Friday after a Thursday night contest to the following Sunday provides 10 days for there to be rest, farther emphasis on fundamentals, and still implement a strategy that will be successful the following week. With a team annually in the playoffs, having the additional bye week twice or more in a year would outweigh the risk of coming out flat and potentially dropping a game in the short week beforehand.
The other theory that holds some water may be that Bill hates the Thursday games, and is trying to imply some sort of jedi mind tricks. With the Patriots being a lightning rod for controversy amongst the internet troll community (largely due to their success), there would be an internet outcry of foul on the decision. The NFL understands this, so would any of us put it past them to instruct schedule makers to avoid fueling that fire?
No matter the reactions or outcome of these comments, there shouldn't be much worry from the fan base about any schedule for this team. Since I'm pretty sure Belichick would be successful coaching blindfolded on the moon, I won't lose too much sleep over this particular wish coming true.
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