Patriots Blitz for Six: The day Doug Pederson beat Bill Belichick


Way back in 2000, now Eagles head coach Doug Pederson beat Bill Belichick and the Patriots as the starting quarterback for the Cleveland Browns.

The 2000 New England Patriots were not very good. It was Bill Belichick’s first season as the head coach in Foxboro, and it could not have been what he wanted on the field. The team went 5-11, with 6 losses in the first 8 games. They lost the next two after the bye week as well.

In the middle of that season, a quarterback named Doug Pederson lead the Cleveland Browns to a win over the Patriots. That same Doug Pederson is now the head coach for the Philadelphia Eagles.

As the Eagles and Patriots get ready for Super Bowl LII, let’s take a look back at the day that Pederson beat Belichick.

To be quite honest, it really wasn’t Pederson that beat the Patriots. He just 178 passing yards and threw a single touchdown. It was the special teams that took down New England. Phil Dawson, yes the one that is still playing in the NFL, was in his second season with the Browns and he opened the scoring with a late first quarter field goal. The Patriots and Adam Vinatieri responded just a few short minutes later with 3-points of their own, and that is how the quarter ended. It was very clearly a defensive battle.

From that point on, the Browns took over. They held Drew Bledsoe and the Patriots scoreless while Pederson threw his lone touchdown to Aaron Shea and Dawson added three more field goals. The Patriots didn’t score again until midway through the final quarter. They were down 19-3, and the game was clearly slipping away. Bledsoe found Rod Rutledge for a 2-yard touchdown pass, and a run on the 2-point conversion attempt was good to make it a 19-11 game.

New England was only able to pressure Pederson with one sack from Chris Slade and Greg Spires, but Bledsoe was sacked 4 times. Drew also threw an interception in the game that proved to be costly.

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So, clearly Doug Pederson was no superstar quarterback, but he will always be able to say that he beat Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots. He will have the chance to do so again, but this time it will be as a head coach. Belichick though is 6-0 in the playoffs against coaches in their first playoff run. It will be a great battle, but New England is the clear favorite. Make sure you check back here on Chowder and Champions all week for the latest Patriots news and analysis.