Bill Belichick isn’t too thrilled with the NFL’s new move toward technology.
This year the league is providing teams with Microsoft Surface tablets that can display the printed pictures coaches have used for decades to analyze plays during the game. The move was supposed to make it easier for coaches and players to share and view the photos, but instead the preseason and early season have been marked with problems.
In the New England Patriots opening day loss to the Miami Dolphins, the tablet used by Bill Belichick kept losing its internet connection, leading to some sharp criticism.
“It’s probably less dependable than the [printed] pictures,” Belichick said in a briefing Wednesday.
The setback was bad news for the league’s $400 million partnership with Microsoft Corp. that brought the tablets to the sidelines. Other coaches, including Bills coach Doug Marrone and Mike Smith of the Atlanta Falcons, have also complained about spotty connections on the sidelines.
Bill Belichick said the problem appears to be widespread.
“I’d say every game that we’ve used them in there have been times where it works fine. There are other times where you lose the connection and you don’t have it,” he said. “I’m sure that’s probably true of most other teams, too. At least other coaches that I’ve talked to made the same type of comments.”
Belichick had actually raised the issue back in the preseason, complaining that Wi-Fi connection was spotty at best, often rendering the tablets useless.
“The issues are those are wireless tablets down on the field, and so if the wireless — or Wi-Fi — isn’t connected or isn’t working or something happens, then you’ve got nothing. You’ve got zero. So that happened in our game, and it’s happened in other games from my understanding of talking to other people that have been involved.”
Bill Belichick isn’t the only problem for the partnership. Microsoft has also been slighted by several coaches who incorrectly referred to the Surface tables as iPads — a product from the company’s main rival, Apple.
[Photo via ESPN]