Legendary NFL coach Bill Belichick has described his exit from the New York Jets as one of the "great moments" of his career. After being introduced as the head coach for the Jets in 2000, Belichick announced he didn't want to be a part of the team from New York.
The Jets then traded Belichick to the New England Patriots, in a trade included the Jets receiving a first-round pick. The rest is history as the Patriots have won six Super Bowls since Belichick arrived to the team. On Monday Night Football, the Patriots scored 13 unanswered fourth quarter point to claim a 30-27 comeback win over the Jets.
"That was one of the not only most defining, but one of the great moments of my career," Belichick said Tuesday in his weekly interview on WEEI in Boston, per ESPN. "That combined with Robert [Kraft] giving me the opportunity to come here, I couldn't have asked for anything more."
Belichick said it wasn't a good situation for him
"That wasn't a good situation for me and I didn't want to be a part of it, so I wasn't," Belichick said Tuesday in the radio interview. "The other half was Robert giving me the opportunity to come [to New England].
Trading, he gave up quite a bit for me to come here, that was a big trade. I'm very thankful that it worked out. "I appreciate all the support from Robert, the Kraft family, the Patriots' organization and all the New England fans.
I'll keep trying to do my best for this team, and this organization, giving the very best that I can. I'm very thankful for the opportunity to come here and I just wasn't going to stay there in that situation."
For almost two full decades, Belichick didn't want to make any deals with the Jets. But that ended in 2019, when the Patriots traded wide receiver Demaryius Thomas to the Jets for a sixth-round pick. "I would say there was a certain period of time when there's no way this transaction would have happened," Belichick said at the time.
"But, during other periods of time, yeah. We don't want to help the Jets, they don't want to help us, we're in the same division. They aren't the easiest trades to make, but if the trade is good for both teams, ultimately what we're trying to do is improve our team."