New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick, while trimming his team’s roster down to the official 53-man limit today, continued his annual tradition of asking each player he cut if he could please lick the sweet, delicious tears of pain and anguish from their weeping faces as they received the bad news.
“He was really nice about it at first,” said fullback Ben Bartholomew, a rookie free agent who was among the Pats’ cuts. “He told me that he was sorry they had to let me go, that he appreciated how hard I worked. I guess I started to get emotional, and kind of teared up a little. And then I saw his eyes sort of glaze over, and he began staring at me with this, I don’t know, hungry look on his face. His lips were even smacking a little. That’s when he asked me if he could lick the tears from my cheeks.”
When questioned about the incident, the notoriously tight lipped Belichick refused to comment, saying, “Look, I’m not going to get into whose face I did or didn’t lick, or whose tears are the saltiest, or whose have kind of a tangy aftertaste. We prefer to keep things like that in-house. Right now, all we’re focusng on is next week’s game against Buffalo.”
Reporters, however, coldn’t help but notice that throughout the press conference, Belichick maintained a longing, ravenous gaze on the Boston Herald’s Pete Jansen in the third row, who’s been going through some tough times at home with the wife lately and who may have looked a little choked up.