WATCH: Patriots Legend Rob Ninkovich Rips Bills Coaching After 'MNF' Loss
By Jason Hall
December 9, 2021
New England Patriots legend Rob Ninkovich provided harsh criticism of Buffalo Bills head coach Sean McDermott and his coaching staff after the Bills' 14-10 loss to the Patriots at Highmark Stadium on Monday (December 6).
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick -- who the former linebacker played for during his final eight seasons (2009-16) -- called 46 rushing plays and only three passing plays during the frigid, windy Monday Night Football victory, which McDermott tried to downplay during his postgame press conference, stating, "Let’s not give more credit than we need to give credit to Bill Belichick in this one."
Ninkovich, who now contributes to ESPN's NFL coverage, wasn't too pleased.
“Their mind is gone,” Ninkovich said on Get Up via NESN. “They’re not going to win this next game. It’s over with. What are we doing? What are we doing, head coach? C’mon. What are we paying you — I don’t know. A lot of money. These head coaches, I’ll let ya. Let’s challenge another QB sneak and see if we get the turn. Like, what are we doing? How about I question your playcalling? How about I question a lot of things you did? Yeah, let’s challenge a muddle of a first down by the Patriots to see if they didn’t get the first down.
"That’s a terrible challenge. The head coach messed up. Give Bill the credit. He actually told you what he was going to do all day. OK, we’ll run the ball. Can you stop us? No. Guess what? In Foxboro? One hundred to nothing.”
Ninkovich -- who predicted the Pats would win 11 games prior to the 2021 season -- was a member of two of Belichick's six Super Bowl championship teams and a co-captain during his tenure in New England.
The Patriots extended their lead in the AFC East Division standings and re-secured sole possession of first-place in the AFC with Monday's victory.
New England had previously won the AFC East during 17 of the last 19 years -- beginning in 2001 during longtime former Patriots quarterback Tom Brady's first season as a starter -- prior to the Bills winning the division last season.
The only two seasons New England hadn't won the division during that span were 2002 and 2008, when Brady experienced a season-ending injury in Week 1.
The Patriots will host the Bills for their second of two division matchups on December 26 at Gillette Stadium.