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NFL Writer Has Puzzling Pick For League’s No. 1 GM

Though he isn’t technically a GM, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick earned the No. 1 spot in one NFL writer’s ranking of the league’s GMs.

Patrick Daugherty of NBC Sports gave Belichick his No. 1 ranking. Why? For starters, the Patriots head coach has done well maneuvering the post-Tom Brady era.

Belichick facilitated the Cam Newton signing. And though Newton didn’t play very well last year, he was much better than the potential alternatives. The Newton signing was just a sign of what was to come this offseason, too. The Patriots reloaded on the offensive side of the football, signing Nelson Agholor, Hunter Henry, Jonnu Smith and Kendrick Bourne.

Belichick has played a major role in reshaping the Patriots’ roster, earning him the No. 1 GM spot on Daugherty’s list in the process.

“You’re permitted one bad year, right? Yes and no,” Daugherty wrote, via NBC Sports. “It’s no ordinary bad year when the franchise icon quarterback you let walk in free agency immediately wins another Super Bowl elsewhere. What figured to be an intricate debate — Belichick or Brady? — didn’t seem so complicated in 2020. It is, of course, but it wasn’t so much letting Brady go as the underlying factors that drove him away. A shoulder-debilitated Cam Newton throwing up prayers to Damiere Byrd and Jakobi Meyers last season laid bare just how talent-bereft Brady’s final few offenses really were. There is no band-aid fix to a situation like that, but Bill Belichick tried in free agency, going on an uncharacteristic spending spree as he added Nelson Agholor, Hunter Henry, Jonnu Smith and Kendrick Bourne, amongst others. It was an admission of fault from the Patriots’ long-time czar, but those are not as rare as you might think. Quickly admitting missteps has always been one of Belichick’s super powers. Despite his foibles as team builder — hello Patriots receiver picks — no general manager has done a better job of giving the coach the right players than Belichick. He will eventually stack together enough little fixes to correct the past half decade’s big mistakes. You could argue I’m blinded by the rings. There is still no one I would rather build a front office around. ”

This may be a bit premature. We have yet to discover whether or not Bill Belichick’s moves pay off.

Sure, on the gridiron Belichick is the best in the game. But calling him the best GM is probably a stretch.

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