Does Bill Parcells have a beef with the New York Jets?
Those who watched the premiere of "The Two Bills" on Thursday night -- the ESPN documentary on the relationship between him and Bill Belichick -- may have come away with that impression. There's a scene in which both men, after sitting for a lengthy interview inside the New York Giants' locker room at MetLife Stadium, refuse the director's request to visit the Jets' locker room.
Belichick's angst is understandable, considering his acrimonious history with the Jets. But Parcells? That surprised some people, so I called him Friday morning for an explanation.
"Here's what happened," he said. "We'd been there for quite a while and we knew we were pretty much done with the interview. They were just wanting to get more footage. Bill had a car waiting for him and I was ready to go. I remember, he was anxious to go and so was I, really.
"It was like, 'Where are they taking us now?' That's when we realized they wanted to take us down there and we just didn't want to go. It wasn't anything against anything. It was just time."
Parcells spent four seasons with the Jets (1997 to 2000) -- three as the coach, one as the top football executive. He went 9-7, 12-4 and 8-8 as the coach and orchestrated the watershed 2000 draft, which included four first-round picks. Unlike Belichick, he didn't leave on bad terms.
"I never had a problem with the Jets," he said. "Listen, you know, I'm hoping Todd (Bowles) does well. He's one of my guys."
The scene in question occurs after the interview and a nostalgic tour of the Giants' Legacy Club. When Parcells and Belichick find out director Ken Rodgers wants to shoot in the Jets' locker room, they protest.
"Not the Jets' locker room," Belichick says with disgust in his voice.
"I'm not going in there," Parcells says emphatically. "I don't want to go in there. What's the point?"
Parcells, who said he hasn't watched the documentary, reiterated that he harbors no ill will toward the Jets.
"I'm 76 years old, I'm not looking for any trouble," he said, laughing. "I caused enough when I was younger."