Ever since Bill Belichick took over the New England Patriots in 2000, the team has preferred to operate in the shadows. They remain notoriously tight-lipped and refuse to provide more information than they have to, lest they give their opponents a potential advantage (loose lips sink ships!). For more than two decades, the organization has been largely shrouded in secrecy.
That mentality extends to the rest of their coaching staff, too. Belichick famously opted not to name an offensive coordinator last season following the departure of Josh McDaniels, leaving many to wonder who was actually in charge of the offense. Matt Patricia? Joe Judge? Both? Neither?
But after stumbling to an 8-9 record last season, it seems the Patriots are trying to be a bit more transparent this year.
Patriots Reveal Coaching Staff
Observers have noticed that New England recently updated its website with new titles for the coaching staff, removing the element of mystery around some of the new additions and roles.
Of course, the biggest one is Bill O’Brien returning as offensive coordinator. Belichick wisely scrapped the Patricia-Judge experiment after just one season, turning the offense back over to the Patriots’ former OC from 2011. As you may recall, New England made the Super Bowl that season, making O’Brien infinitely more qualified than Patricia and Judge, neither of whom had any offensive coaching experience in the NFL prior to last year.
While Belichick likes to play things close to the chest, clearly identifying coaching roles and letting everyone know where they stand can’t hurt. His players were probably a bit confused about the whole Judge-Patricia situation last year, too, so it helps to have a straightforward chain of command and clearly defined roles.
With O’Brien taking over the offense and Mac Jones poised for a bounce-back in Year 3, the Patriots should be able to avoid the sloppy play and stagnant offense that plagued them last year. At the very least, they should be able to win at least seven regular-season games for the 23rd season in a row, so take the Over 6.5 wins (-115) at DraftKings Sportsbook.
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