While he is not listed on the active roster and has never made a tackle for the New England Patriots, Bill Belichick is the ultimate chess player for the Patriots. Belichick, the owner of three Super Bowl titles, a 15-6 playoff record, and countless AFC East titles, needs this Super Bowl to cement his legacy as an all-time great coach. Given his success in the last decade with the Pats, detractors will argue that Bill has done enough to be mentioned in the same breath as Tom Landry, Chuck Noll, and Vince Lombardi. However, I completely disagree. Belichick, known for his defensive brilliance, coached the 31st ranked defense this season. That same defense is playing its best football to date, butĀ its two AFC playoff opponents did not have lethal downfield passing attacks that have roasted that same defense. The Giants do and are playing their best football to date.

Bill knows that his offense has carried the load for the entire season. Namely, the Brady-Gronkowski hookup has been damn near impossible to stop. Now that Gronkowski is suffering from a high ankle injury, that Patriot offense must feature Wes Welker and Aaron Hernandez more prominently. Ultimately, Brady will lead the offense and work out any kinks that may occurs. However, the onus is on Belichick to do something that six teams in a row have failed to do–stop Eli Manning and the Giants downfield passing attack. The Patriots have been burnt many, many times on deep passes and Bill must find a way to limit the damage.

This game has many, many storylines, but Belichick’s change at becoming an ‘immortal’ coach goes up in smoke if he loses to the same team twice in the Super Bowl.