The following memes depict the savageness of Bill Belichick: Jamie Collins wanted too much money, so the New England Patriots had no problem trading him to the Cleveland Browns for a draft pick they would have gotten anyway. As the kids love to say, Savage as f***.
And so Collins, regarded as one of the best inside linebackers in the NFL, is leaving the best team in the league (7-1), a team he helped win the Super Bowl less than two years ago, to spend the final season of his contract on a 0-8 team. That’s one heck of a change to adjust to in a matter of hours.
As the story goes, Collins was asking for Von Miller money, which means close to $20 million a season (Von Miller is making $114 million over 6 years). The Patriots weren’t willing to offer him more than $11 million a season, which Collins wasn’t accepting.
And so, despite their defensive problems and the fact that they let Chandler Jones go so they’d have the cap space to re-sign Collins (and others), Collins was shipped for a conditional third round pick, basically a fourth round pick, which the Patriots were going to get anyway had Collins left in free agency. But this isn’t just about the money. This is Belichick sending a message to his players that the defense needs to get better. Collins disappointed this season and asked for too much money, a combination that never works well with the Patriots.