Nick Siriani was just starting his sophomore year at Mount Union when Bill Belichick became the head coach of the Patriots.
On Sunday — six Super Bowl championships, nine Super Bowl appearances, 298 regular season wins and 31 postseason wins — Belichick faces Siriani for the first time.
Siriani studies franchises, general managers, owners, and schemes, but he studies head coaches more than anything else, and he’s spent a lot of time over the past 23 years studying Belichick.
“I’m always fascinated by people who have consistency, and that’s what his career has been about – that incredible consistency of success,” Siriani said on Tuesday. “And that’s what I’ve always been fascinated by.
“Every time you watch his defense in play, you see the fundamentals on display. You can see the clever stances on display, the situational football intelligence on display. I think a lot of that stuff inspired me to say, ‘What is important to winning football games?’ Well, IQ and the fundamentals of football. foot.
“Hey, core values are a direct reflection of the great coaches and teams I’ve studied in the past, and he’s clearly at the top of that list.”
Both Belichick and Sirianni played Division 3 football, both reached the Super Bowl in their second year as head coach, both began their coaching careers with one of the best young quarterbacks in the league, and both replaced the head coach at some point in their lives. His career won him a Super Bowl.
The Eagles take on the Patriots at 4:25 p.m. Sunday at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. This is Siriani’s third season with the Eagles, and Belichick’s 24th season.y with the patriots.
As much as this week is about studying the Patriots, it’s also about studying Belichick.
You have to understand your enemy before you go into battle.
“You try to turn over every stone you can to look for answers and different things,” Siriani said. “Anyone who was near Coach Belichick, you always asked him questions, whether it was the scheme or whether it was the coaching philosophies. I was always fascinated by him and his coaching tree.
Siriani spent the 2012 season teaming Romeo Crennel with current Giants head coach Brian Dabul, who was with Belichick from 2002 through 2006 and back from 2013 through 2016. Crennel was Belichick’s defensive coordinator from 2001 through 2004.
And last April, Siriani named longtime Belichick assistant Matt Patricia as the defensive senior assistant. Patricia has been with Belichick in a variety of roles on both sides of the ball from 2004 through 2017 and again in 2021 and 2022.
“Brian Dabul, he’s a great mentor to me,” said Siriani. “And then, how important it was that Coach Patricia helped me as well, just with general coaching philosophies and also in terms of the scheme.”
It’s not like Sirianni hired Patricia just to think about Belichick. But… hey, maybe he did.
“It’s just a daily process of asking — ‘Hey, what would Bill do in this situation here,’ sort of thing. These are ongoing conversations, and I feel like I get to know him really well from the guys he’s been around for a long time.
“I’m honored to be able to do that. Because when we put on a play or a road or something like that, we’re showing our guys how to do it, from great players in the past, great plays we’ve made here as Eagles.
“It’s no different for coaches. You want to study the great coaches of the past and present and try to perfect your craft. … And so what you’re asking is the process, the day-to-day operations, all those different things.
Patriots are not what they used to be.
They went at least four consecutive years without winning a playoff game for the first time from 1987 through 1995 and four years without a Super Bowl first appearance from 1997 through 2000.
They’re 25-25 since the departure of Tom Brady, and they’re a four-point underdog against the Eagles on Sunday, marking only the seventh time under Belichick that they’ve been a home underdog by at least four points.
But apart from all that, this is a legend and a member of the first voting hall on the other side.
“Of course, you’ll be looking for every advantage you can get,” Siriani said. “And that’s what we’re going to do this week.”
(marks for translation) Nick Siriani