The New England Patriots' team captains weren't the only ones confused when Bill Belichick opted to put the ball in Peyton Manning's hands to start overtime of last week's thrilling 34-31 comeback victory over the Broncos.
Patriots owner Robert Kraft said Tuesday night that he questioned the choice in his private box as overtime began.
"When Bill chose the wind, I said, 'What is he doing?'" Kraft said, via the Boston Herald. "Someone (in my box) said, 'Don't you have a phone down there?' ... But I spoke with (Belichick) and chatted about it with him afterward, and once again, he was on top of things. What they figured out was, by choosing the wind, it was an incremental 20 yards that they needed to be able to kick, and sure enough, it was a very wise decision.
"Probably, as a fan, I don't think 80 to 90 percent of our fans would think giving Peyton Manning the ball in overtime was going to be in our best interest."
Kraft has questioned Belichick's handling of the media and once called him a "schmuck" for the Spygate controversy, but the two have perhaps the tightest owner-coach bond in the NFL.
Belichick's father literally wrote the book on football scouting. Belichick himself is in his fifth decade of coaching in the NFL. His Friday press conferences are a free-versing treat on history and strategy. It's no wonder his owner has implicit trust in his football decisions.