What Belichick told Kevin O'Connell after Pats' loss to Vikings originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
As much as it stung to lose to the Minnesota Vikings on Thanksgiving Day, Bill Belichick took solace in one of his former players' success.
Vikings head coach Kevin O'Connell was drafted by Belichick in 2008 and spent the year learning under the longtime Patriots head coach. The third-round quarterback played in two NFL games during his brief playing career, both in a relief role with New England.
After Minnesota's 33-26 win, Belichick went out of his way to pay O'Connell a visit and praise him for the job he's done in his first year as an NFL head coach.
"What really flattered O’Connell is how Belichick told him that, when he watched the Vikings’ tape, he could see how the coaches were teaching the players some old Patriot credos, and one in particular—You can’t win until you learn how not to lose—in showing the guys the value of playing complementary football," The MMQB's Albert Breer wrote.
“It was special for me, because there’s nobody I respect more in our game than him,” O’Connell told Breer.
The Vikings went on to defeat the New York Jets in Week 13 to improve to 10-2 on the season. They will clinch the NFC North with another victory and a Detroit Lions loss.
As for Belichick and the Patriots, they find themselves on the playoff bubble following their 24-10 loss to the Buffalo Bills. They take a 6-6 record into their Week 14 matchup vs. the Arizona Cardinals.