New England Patriots Rumors: 2 candidates to replace Josh McDaniels

Alabama Crimson Tide Offensive Coordinator Bill O'Brien (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Alabama Crimson Tide Offensive Coordinator Bill O'Brien (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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New England Patriots
Head Coach Joe Judge of the New York Giants (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

New England Patriots offensive coordinator candidate No. 2: Joe Judge

Joe Judge isn’t going to be a popular head coaching candidate for the foreseeable future, and for good reason. His two seasons leading the New York Giants were both complete disasters, and it wasn’t very surprising to see the Giants move in a different direction after the season ended.

Despite Judge’s lack of success leading his own team, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him emerge as one of the top candidates for the Patriots suddenly vacant offensive coordinator position. Judge worked his way up the coaching tree in New England on the special teams side of things, but in his final season with the team in 2019, he also was the wide receivers coach. Judge has a history with the team, so he would have a head start on other potential candidates from the jump.

Judge’s struggles with the Giants shouldn’t really be anything that prevents the Pats from bringing him onboard. Heck, McDaniels struggled during his first two seasons as a head coach with the Denver Broncos, and over 10 years later he’s just finally getting back into the head coaching ring. Judge has already proven to be successful with New England at an assistant and coordinator role, and his prior experience should help him here.

Even if Judge doesn’t come back as the offensive coordinator, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him return to the Patriots coaching staff in some sort of unique role. He followed a similar path to Matt Patricia, who got run out of Detroit by the Lions pretty quickly into his head coaching tenure as well. Patricia returned to New England’s coaching staff this season, although he wasn’t given a very specific role.

Judge isn’t going to be offered a head coaching job anytime soon considering the mess he made with the Giants. But he can follow a similar path that McDaniels took and start to rebuild his value as a head coaching candidate by working his way back up the ranks in New England. Unfortunately, I don’t see him beating out the top candidate for this position, who also happens to be a former coach with the Pats.