5 intriguing New England Patriots storylines that will define 2022 offseason

New England Patriots. (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images)
New England Patriots. (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images) /
1 of 6
New England Patriots
New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images) /

If not for a 30-point blowout loss to the Buffalo Bills to end the 2021 NFL season, it would’ve been considered a step forward for the New England Patriots.

In a few ways, it still was a successful season, but the 47-17 loss on Wild Card weekend has Bill Belichick and his team facing some intriguing questions heading into the offseason.  While a lot of those questions will rally about the defensive side of the football, there will be some personnel decisions evolving amongst the roster and coaching staff that will obviously change the complexion of how the Patriots will look in 2022.

New England Patriots, Bill Belichick in for another intriguing offseason

After uncharacteristically breaking the bank the in 2021 offseason, Belichick will have to do some soul searching when it comes to his approach to building the team.  While the continued growth of his own young quarterback Mac Jones will be pivotal, the Patriots head coach must re-define his team to compete with a quarterback like Josh Allen.

Speaking of the Bills’ QB, Belichick personally congratulated Allen following that 47-17 blowout loss, which is a sign that the future Hall-of-Fame coach recognizes the challenge ahead of him this offseason.

"“He came up to me, which was really cool,” Allen said in an appearance on the “Pat McAfee Show.”  “I’ve got a lot of respect for him and what he’s done in his career.  Obviously, he’s one of the – if not the – greatest coach of all time, so for him to come up to me after the game and give me some kudos and dap me up, it meant a lot to me, just knowing the coach that he is, the type of players that he has around and coached, and obviously the success he has had in his career.  It was a pretty cool moment for me.”"

Wow.  To think the competitor in Belichick went to an opposing team’s locker room to personally congratulate a quarterback is the most un-Belichick gesture.  But perhaps it’s also a sign that the great head coach is now taking Allen seriously, which should make for another interesting offseason at One Patriot Way.

Whether through the draft, free agency or trades, here are five hot storylines that will define the 2022 offseason for the Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots.