2. Poor judgment on offensive personnel in general
Bill Belichick gets a ton of rightful credit as the head coach of the New England Patriots, but he doesn't get evaluated harshly enough for some of the things he does as the de facto general manager of the team. Belichick has final say on personnel, and when you have final say on personnel, you deserve to be put under the microscope when:
- Your first-round QB is looking like a bust
- Your top free agent acquisitions on offense are getting cut, traded, or not performing in general
The Patriots averaged a pathetic 13.9 points per game in the 2023 season, which was somehow not bad enough to rank 32nd (just 31st). They ranked 31st behind only the New York Jets in total first downs this season. They also ranked 31st just behind the New York Jets in third down conversion rate.
Where were big-money free agents like JuJu Smith-Schuster? Why was Mike Gesicki not having a bigger impact on the offense? What is the deal with Tyquan Thornton's development at the receiver position? Why is the running game not consistent?
New England's offense had some moments throughout the season, but ultimately, this collection of players likely needs to be wiped off the board and reset. The Patriots don't have the personnel to really consistently compete right now. And that's on Bill Belichick.