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Bill Parcells insists he's done with the NFL

4/18/2011

Bill Parcells, who left a large footprint on three-quarters of the AFC East, claimed Monday morning he won't make it a clean sweep and work for the Buffalo Bills -- or any other NFL team.

So he said.

"I'm done," Parcells flatly declared on a conference call to discuss his nomination for the Patriots Hall of Fame along with quarterback Drew Bledsoe and defensive lineman Houston Antwine.

Parcells has made statements like that before. He was supposed to be retired before he joined the Patriots and the New York Jets as a head coach and then the Miami Dolphins as vice president of football operations in 2007.

"I know I've said that before, so you better put it down in pencil," Parcells continued by phone from his home in Jupiter, Fla. "But my full intention is ... Now, you know I'm going to be 70 years old in August.

"I'm enjoying my time now. I really left Miami about Oct. 1 last year, and this is the first time I've had any extended period of time to myself and to get to do some things that I've enjoyed doing. ... It's a good time for me.

"I still have a lot of things I'd like to try to do, but I think I'm going to leave the NFL to someone else now."

Parcells also revisited his time with the Patriots. He was their head coach for only four seasons, but he made an impact. The Patriots went 14-50 the previous four years before his arrival. Parcells went 32-32 and guided the Patriots to a Super Bowl.

"In all honesty, the franchise was ... I don't want to use the word 'disarray,' but it certainly was 'unsettled,' would be the best way to put it," Parcells said. "The ownership was unsettled. There were not a lot of people going to the games. The management of the franchise was unsettled. It was a big undertaking."

That said, Parcells wouldn't take much credit for turning the Patriots into the franchise it's known as today. Parcells called it "one of the premier franchises in the league" because of Bill Belichick and the investments owner Robert Kraft made into Gillette Stadium and the practice facilities for polishing the Patriots' brand.

"Bill Belichick has done a tremendous job there, a remarkable job," Parcells said. "It's a model for the teams in the league that are aspiring to do what the Patriots have already done. I don't really think I had a whole lot to do with that."

Parcells also regretted his "domestic misunderstandings" with the Patriots' front office before his bitter departure. Parcells said he didn't really want to leave a young team that had just been to the Super Bowl, but felt he had little choice at the time because of philosophical differences that have since been settled.

"Hey, that's life," Parcells said. "You learn from things as you go on, and certainly I probably, retrospectively would have approached them a little differently than I did."