New England Patriots
BILL BELICHICK & THE SUPER BOWL PATRIOTS
RETURN TO THEIR INAUGURAL SEASON ROOTS
Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick and his long time player personnel assistant Ernie Adams were the proud recipients of Helmet Hut's Patriots Throwback helmets from the inaugural 1960 AFL season.
Helmet Hut’s contributing researcher, Lou Lampson, was a classmate and teammate of both at Phillips Andover Academy and all three recently got together for a reunion of their undefeated Andover New England Prep School Championship team. Lampson was a wide receiver while Belichick and Adams anchored the line at center and guard respectively. Many of you Hawaiian WFL fans may recognize Milt Holt. He was the QB at Andover and went on to success with Harvard and then the Pros.
The Pats’ helmets featuring the three cornered hat logo worn only in 1960 also had the player’s numerals in contrasting red. Belichick’s #50 and Adams’ #63 were their Andover football numbers.
Belichick was astounded at the weight (or lack thereof) when compared to current day headgear. He showed the helmet to Patriots DE Bobby Hamilton who was equally shocked. Hamilton had never seen a suspension but said his granddaddy had an old leather helmet from the ‘40’s which reminded him of an "old aviator’s three-piece floppy helmet".
Ironically, during their Andover Prep careers, Belichick and Adams both wore RK2 helmets, which was the preferred shell used by the Pats all through the 1960’s, and both were cognizant of the difference in shell styling. Bellichick also vividly recalled wearing the 2-bar mask while playing center, a choice he would not promote in today’s trench warfare.
Belichick enlisted Lampson to send him a proposal suggesting the Pats use this helmet style during an upcoming “throwback” game, inclusive of the “grey mask”.
Since both Belichick and Adams are
football history buffs, their appreciation of the workmanship and detail was
staunch; tough to argue with success, as they sit atop the football world with
two of the past three Super Bowl trophies.