Bill Belichick recalls time he almost joined Vikings as an assistant coach

Friday, 02 Feb, 2018

"The Two Bills", ESPN's latest "30-for-30" documentary is as much about the relationship between Bill Parcells and Bill Belichick as a look at how each man's decisions influenced the other's career path.

The most intriguing of those instances revolves around Parcells' move from the Patriots to the Jets in 1997 and Belichick's skipping out on Gang Green to become the head coach in New England. I had the good fortune of going down [for] a day and watching practice and getting a chance to visit with him.

Bill Parcells, who coached the Jets for three seasons, explains why he didn't want to go into Jets locker room when he filmed the new documentary for ESPN.

. "I am not anxious about what happened 10 or 11 or 12 year ago", Parcells said. The best part is that Belichick would say they'd get done playing, they'd all be sweaty, they got their exercise in, they'd walk out, and Parcells would light up a cigarette and go back to work.

"It was like, 'Where are they taking us now?' That's when we realized they wanted to take us down there and we just didn't want to go". Steckel said he thought Belichick would accept the position but he didn't. Patriots owner Robert Kraft, however, said he was so upset with the circumstances under which Parcells left for NY that he "had to clean the house of the whole Parcells Era". I'm at the airport and I'm going home (to the NY area).' I say, 'But Bill, we haven't even had a chance to sit down and talk yet.' He said, 'Les, I've talked to several people in the building and I would just like to say to you that you had better be alert, you had better be aware. The plan was we were going to meet with Bill at 8 a.m. the next day and talk about salary and those things. "He said, 'I don't want to go any further, and I have to go catch this flight.' And that was it".

"That was a tough year for the Giants, for Bill [Parcells]", Belichick said. So I knew Floyd from when we coached together with the Lions. "And when the year was over, Les Steckel had become the head coach at Minnesota and Floyd Reese was also there". I hope he coaches 25 more years.