How Robert Kraft Reportedly Sabotaged Bill Belichick's Job Hunt

According to new reporting, the Patriots owner spent his offseason trying to sabotage Bill Belichick.
Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

When the New England Patriots and Bill Belichick parted ways after the disappointing 2023 season, all eyes were on the iconic coach to see where he would end up next. Considering the sheer number of head coaching vacancies in the NFL this winter, the general consensus was that Belichick would be hired to coach one of those teams. To the surprise of everyone, this never came to fruition.

The Atlanta Falcons were considered the favorites to land Belichick. The 72-year-old head coach did multiple interviews with the franchise before the Falcons deciding to hire Raheem Morris instead.

It turns out, there was plenty of lobbying behind closed doors to make sure Belichick didn't get a job in the offseason. The mastermind behind it was, of course, Robert Kraft.

Robert Kraft Spent the Offseason Sabotaging Bill Belichick's Job Search

The latest ESPN piece by Don Van Natta Jr, Seth Wickersham, and Jeremy Fowler details what went down during Belichick's job hunt this winter.

What is being reported looks extremely bad for the Patriots owner. According to sources, Kraft wanted to make sure Belichick wasn't hired, so he told the Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank "not to trust Bill." Verified by two sources, Kraft allegedly "delivered a stark assessment of Belichick's character."

"Asked whether Kraft had any motivation to keep Belichick off the sidelines, a source close to the coach said: "If Bill goes on to have success and Tom already had success, then who does [Kraft] have to blame?""

As low as this may seem, even for Robert Kraft, it's not necessarily surprising. He wants to make sure that he continues to take credit for the dynasty Belichick and Tom Brady built in New England. Anything to damage that perception will reflect poorly on him.

How long Kraft will succeed in preventing Belichick from getting hired remains to be seen. The Hall-of-Famer is set to join ESPN for the next NFL season but he is surely going to be on the shortlist of candidates for plenty of teams come next offseason.

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