Everyone likes to win, but winning doesn’t come easy. Arguably one of best sport franchises in history is the New England Patriots. Known for their success in the playoffs, and constant drive throughout the season, they have been able to secure six Super Bowl titles. Coming up with a formula to be victorious every Sunday is what NFL coaches work on every week in practice, Head coach Bill Belichek has potentially cracked the code. You may think I am a Patriots fan, but that couldn’t be any further from the truth! I do, however, respect a winning mentality, Bill Belichek and the Patriots have just that.
6-0 and coming off a big win against the Giants, the Patriots are sure contenders to reach another Super Bowl this year. Even after losing a few big-name talents, the Patriots have continued to work together as a team and overcome the hurdles each week. Team cohesion can’t be questioned when speaking about this franchise. The objective every year is to not only win, but to raise the Lombardy trophy at the 50-yard line at the end of the season. In order to do this Tom Brady has to continue leading his team, and his success is largely in the hands of his offensive line. It’s not uncommon for Brady to praise his offensive lines performance following a hard-fought game. Little gestures like this can easily boost comradery and increase cohesion amongst the unit.
In recent news Antonio Brown was released from the team after only playing one game. The decision for his release wasn’t based on his talent level, but rather his off the field troubles. His larger than life personality has been known to carry over into the locker room. There is no denying his self-confidence in his ability, however, with a disciplined franchise you have to conform and adopt the team first mentality. The release of Brown had no effect on the collective efficacy of the team. Instead, they stuck to their game plan and have continued on their winning ways.
We may never know exactly what has made the Patriots so dominant, but cohesion has certainly played a part. According to Gruman, Schneider & Coutts, 2017 “there is considerable anecdotal and research evidence that teams high in cohesion perform better than do teams low in cohesion (p.137). As long as Bill Belichek remains at the helm, it is likely we continue to see the Patriots as a relevant franchise. However, we beat them once, so we can beat them again. Fly eagles fly.
Gruman, J. A., Schneider, F. W., & Coutts, L. M. (2017). Applied social psychology: understanding and addressing social and practical problems. Los Angeles: SAGE.