The First Mismatch of the NFL Season

There’s been an entertaining little spat between the H.C. of your New England Patriots and Minnesota Viking coach Brad Childress, a man who is notable for wearing a ridiculous bucket hat during training camp, and getting called out by Terrell Owens when both were with the Eagles.

The dispute is relatively minor. The Pats wanted to sneak tight end Garret Mills through waivers and sign him to the practice squad. According to Childress, Bill Belichick made a call to Minnesota and said essentially, don’t take our guy and we won’t take your guy, linebacker David Herron. The Vikings did it anyway and both teams should have gone on their merry way. This sort of thing happens all the time in the NFL, and rarely do coaches pull back the curtain and reveal the innerworkings of their own land of Oz, which Childress did in a radio interview. The well-connected site, had this reaction.

Regardless of his motivation for sharing with the media a conversation that he claims to have had with Pats coach Bill Belichick regarding maneuverings at the bottom of their respective rosters, the early reaction from league insiders regarding the harsh comments from Vikings coach Brad Childress regarding Belichick is that Childress made an enormous blunder.

Said one source: “Why, in God’s name, is Brad Childress talking about Bill Belichick to the press? Is [Childress] a complete and senseless moron? He basically insults one of the most powerful coaches in the league by calling him out as dishonest. He’s an idiot coach.”

Now Childress is backtracking, which is no surprise. Way back in one of my earlier journalistic odysseys I was on the Eagle beat when T.O. called out Childress. The gist of it was that Childress was giving Owens heat in a meeting and T.O. didn’t care for it because the players (not just Owens) saw Childress as a figurehead.

Back then Childress was nominally the offensive coordinator but everyone knew head coach Andy Reid ran the show. Nevertheless, we in the media had to endure a weekly 15-minute “press conference” with Childress where he would tell us absolutely nothing in his tortured syntax/coach-speak.

One player even asked us, “Why do y’all talk to Brad. He doesn’t do shit around here. You know that.”

Many in Minny feel Childress is in over his head, and this incident, minor as it was, will certainly not help his rep.