BOSTON (CBS) — SnapFace. MyFace. InstaFace. You’d never see Bill Belichick joining any of them … even if they did exist.
Yet, with Americans remaining socially distant during the COVID-19 fight, the soon-to-be-68-year-old Patriots head coach has had to endure a crash course in computer programs that he had never heard of until very recently.
Fortunately for Belichick himself and the Patriots organization, he’s proving to be a fast learner. But like just about everything else Belichick discusses, the coach admitted that he still has plenty of room to improve.
“I would say ‘mastered’ is probably not the right word. But I’m certainly better at it than I was four weeks ago,” Belichick said on a conference call on Monday. “I mean I didn’t know what half of this was. But at least now I can … I can do more than I did, I’ll put it that way. Get a little better every day, learn a new button or learn a new thing to click on and see what trick that does.”
Belichick has long expressed a distaste for various technological platforms, often throwing out predictable jokes whenever the topic of social media was brought up during press conferences. But now with no other option but to adapt, Belichick believes he’s come a long way in a short time.
“It’s been very, very educational. And I was starting on the first floor — maybe even in the basement,” Belichick said. “So yeah, it’s been interesting to get educated on the technology.”
Belichick made sure to give credit to Dan Famosi, the Patriots’ IT specialist, for doing “a tremendous job for us.” That includes setting up technology for coaches, scouts, playbooks, offseason preparations, meetings, and much more.
“Just to be able to deal with so many people that are — some are very proficient at some of the things we’re doing, others like myself are remedial — so putting things together on a lot of different levels for multiple groups, and interactions that cross over different connections and needs … can we do this with this type of meeting and this kind of conversation? Can we do something else? Some are one-on-one, some are five people, 10 people, 20 people, and we’re preparing for larger groups than that,” Belichick said. “So there really are a lot of moving parts, and Dan’s done a tremendous job for us in trying to pull a lot of things together and remotely help out people like me that need a lot of help.”
Those skills will come in handy at the end of the month, when the NFL will hold a “virtual” draft. Without the traditional “war room” setup, teams will be relying entirely on remote communication platforms in order to execute their draft plans. The draft will be held April 23-25, with the Patriots currently in possession of 12 picks. Those picks range from No. 23 in the first round to No. 241 in the seventh round, and with Belichick’s penchant for making numerous trades every year, he’ll have no choice but to master those skills in the coming weeks.