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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Dan Benton

Report: Brian Daboll’s ‘Patriots Way’ approach doesn’t fly with Wink Martindale

New York Giants head coach Brian Daboll cut his NFL teeth with the New England Patriots, where he served 11 total seasons under Bill Belichick over two stints.

During that time, Daboll learned what’s become known as the “Patriots way.” That coaching style places an emphasis on personal accountability, consistent improvement, and a focus on team success over personal gain.

It also involves a lot of tough love and yelling.

It’s the same style of coaching that Daboll saw under Nick Saban when he served as the Alabama offensive coordinator in 2007.

The lessons Daboll learned over those 12 combined season has helped mold him into the coach he is today. And he’s taken a lot of that with him to the Giants, including the “Patriots Way.”

Unfortunately for Daboll, just as it had with Joe Judge before him, that sometimes causes a bit of friction.

Mike Sando of The Athletic reports that Daboll’s use of the “Patriots Way” behind closed doors is what has led to a falling out with defensive coordinator Wink Martindale, despite what they and the players would have you believe.

“Daboll learned from Bill and Nick, and we all remember Nick undressing Lane Kiffin and Daboll himself at Alabama,” a veteran coach who knows members of the Giants’ staff told Sando. “A guy as established as Wink says, ‘You can yell at the young coaches, but not me.'”

ESPN’s Jordan Raanan, while appearing on the latest episode of Talkin’ Giants, also acknowledged a rift between Daboll and Martindale.

“This is just my opinion on this but he gets on Wink and he gets on him hard. He’s all over him,” Raanan said. “When you’re on this guy and you’re riding him hard, and you’re crushing his defense and questioning the things he’s doing, and the guy is looking across to the other side and he’s like, ‘Your offense is 32nd in the league. We can’t even move the ball. . . And you’re sitting here MFing me and giving me a hard time.’ That’s how the tension builds and that’s why we’re at where we’re at.”

Raanan believes there’s still an outside shot that Martindale and Daboll could mend fences but admits that if he were a betting man, it’s not a wager he would make.

But it’s not just Martindale who is having a hard time with Daboll. Raanan also reports that others have acknowledged that Daboll is a “hard guy to work for.”

“That is something that’s come out,” Raanan said. “I got a text yesterday from somebody out of complete nowhere that said (that).”

The bottom line here is that when Jay Glazer reports something, you can take that something to the bank. The issues between Daboll and Martindale are very real and it will come to a head sooner rather than later.

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