Skip to main content

Willie McGinest explains 'The Patriot Way'

San Francisco -- "The Patriot Way" is a term that's been thrown around Detroit the last month or so since the Lions hired Bob Quinn away from New England to be the team's new general manager.

After taking the job, Quinn then hired former Patriot Kyle O'Brien to be his director of player personnel. Ron Miles, also a former Patriot, was added to the scouting department. Harold Nash Jr. is the new head of strength and conditioning for the Lions -- he spent 10 years in New England before landing in Detroit.

There is an obvious Patriots' influence developing in the Lions front office and football operations department. Lions fans are certainly hoping it leads to the same level of consistency and success the Patriots organization has enjoyed for more than a decade now.

In Quinn's time in New England, he helped the Patriots build one of the most impressive stretches in NFL history that produced four Super Bowl titles. Since 2000, Quinn's first year in New England, the Patriots won six AFC Championships, 13 AFC East titles, 12-plus games in a season 10 times (which includes the past six years) and 10-plus games in 14 of his 16 seasons.

"It's about consistency and it's about the process," Quinn said in his introductory press conference. "Things in New England, when I started there 16 years ago, didn't happen overnight. It's a step by step, day by day, month by month process.

"One of many things I learned in New England was that we're always striving to get better. Whether it's scouting, whether it's coaching, whether it's in the weight room, nutrition, analytics, if we can get one step better every day, that's putting this organization in the right direction."

Willie McGinest spent 12 years in New England from 1994-2005 so he's very familiar with "The Patriot Way."

"It's the way you approach football games," McGinest said during a media event at the Super Bowl. "It's the way you prepare. It's the way that you interact with your teammates. It's not about an individual. It's about team. It's about conducting yourself a certain way.

"Everybody wants to know, 'what's the magic?' The magic is in the players buying into it. Listening to the coaches pushing the players and preparing them. Putting them in situations to win, understanding the personnel that you have and creating game plans around that. It's not being stuck in your own system."

McGinest said the core values of "The Patriot Way" always stay the same, but it's true strength is rooted in adaptability and a team-first mentality in everything that's done from the top of the organization on down.

Quinn doesn't plan to copy and paste everything that was done in New England here in Detroit. He'll put his own stamp on things, which every good GM does, but he'll no-doubt take some lessons he learned in New England and apply them here in Detroit.

"My job is to come in here every day and do the best thing I can do," Quinn said.

"Whether it's player acquisition, whether it's helping the coaches, helping the trainers, the strength coaches, that's really what my goal is, make everyone in this building better."

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content