Patriots fans are all too familiar with the duel between “Bill Belichick the coach” and “Bill Belichick the GM.” And in the post-Brady era, there’s been a lot less wiggle room for the latter to make mistakes without it really costing the team.
This was actually a pretty good offseason for the Patriots overall, and grades were pretty favorable.
But this team needed more than just a “pretty good” offseason to put itself in a position to succeed in 2023, and the front office missed the mark.
Here are the three biggest offseason mistakes that will cost us this year.
3 Costly Patriots Offseason Blunders
1. Failing to Acquire Real Offensive Line Depth
I know it received mixed reactions, but I really liked the Riley Reiff addition to add a stopgap starter at a position of need. But that’s about where my loving the offensive line moves ended.
You absolutely can’t afford to be thin on the O-line if you want to make a playoff push (especially in a grueling 17-game season), and the Patriots didn’t do enough to add depth.
James Ferentz is the only real veteran offering promising depth on the interior spots, with a trio of totally unproven (and largely over-drafted) rookies filling out the other spots. Could Jake Andrews, Atonio Mafi or Sidy Sow develop into solid players? Of course, but you don’t want “fifth-round pick can contribute as a rookie” to be your Plan A.
Retaining Connor McDermott was key, but adding formerly-released-Patriots-UDFA Calvin Anderson as the other reserve tackle again leaves a lot to be desired.
Patriots fans (and Mac Jones) better hope the starting unit stays healthy.