American Sports

Titans Used Belichick's Own Dirty Trick Against Him Last Night & He Wasn't Happy

Titans Used Belichick's Own Dirty Trick Against Him Last Night & He Wasn't Happy

The Patriots have been eliminated from the NFL Playoffs, perhaps signalling the end of what has been the most prolific dynasty of the Super Bowl era. The Belichick-Brady tandem has won six rings since their first in 2001, but many feel their loss to the Titans last night closes the door on that particular chapter in history.

It was certainly not a typical Patriots performance, registering only 13 points in a home playoff game. What's more, they didn't score at all in the second half.

Their defence was torn apart by Derrick Henry who torched them for 182 yards on the ground. Ryan Tannehill, the Titans quarterback, threw for only 72 yards. When the Patriots are beaten in Foxboro by a quarterback performance like that you know something isn't right.

The Titans even used the type of cheeky coaching tricks that Belichick has made his name on. Head coach Mike Vrabel played for the Patriots for seven years, and he seems to have picked up a thing or two from his former coach.

With the Titans leading by one point in the fourth quarter, they had a 4th-and-5 on the Patriots 36-yard line. They decided to punt the ball, but not before draining some clock.

They allowed the play clock to tick right down to zero, taking the 'delay of game' penalty for five yards. Of course, this would give them another 25 seconds to take off the clock.

They couldn't take another 'delay of game' penalty without being penalised 15 yards. This time, they committed a false start with a couple of seconds remaining. When the Patriots then committed an infringement of their own, the Titans managed to take nearly two minutes off the clock.

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This was very cheeky, but it is allowed under the current rules.

It's fair to say Bill Belichick was not best pleased with what was unfolding on the field.

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He really doesn't have anything to complain about.

Earlier this season Belichick used the exact same trick in a regular season win over the Jets. When they were up by 33 points. He seemed to find it a lot funnier on that occasion.

After the Jets game, the Pats coach said he was just trying to burn some clock and was using a 'loophole' to do so:

It’s probably a loophole that’ll be closed and probably should be closed, but right now it’s open.

What goes around comes around.

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Gary Connaughton

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