It looked like Bill Belichick was well on his way to coaching the Atlanta Falcons after an exit following 24 seasons with the New England Patriots. NFL insiders were reporting that it was "Belichick or bust" for the Falcons, but things began to break apart with each passing day until Atlanta eventually hired former LA Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris as the new head coach.
Belichick has coached six Super Bowl-winning teams while Raheem Morris has three losing records in four seasons as an interim and full-time head coach. If winning a championship is the ultimate goal, going with the more experienced Belichick seems like a no-brainer, right?
So, what happened? Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer helps shed some light on what led to Morris being hired over Belichick.
Patriots News: Why Falcons Didn't Hire Belichick
Patriots fans (and anyone familiar with New England football) know how Belichick loves control. Having said that, his love for having his hands on everything is a key factor in why he didn't get hired by the Falcons.
Breer reports that fear around those close to Falcons owner Arthur Blank voiced concern about what would happen if Belichick was hired. Blank wanted to hire the 71-year-old from the beginning of his search, but the uncertainty regarding the "amount of change" that would follow was too concerning to continue the process.
"After a while, the amount of change hiring Belichick could require weighed on Blank. Especially when taking into consideration that making that amount of change might only get him two years of Belichick."- Albert Breer on Bill Belichick
It isn't too surprising that Blank came to this conclusion.
Belichick doesn't have another 24 seasons in him. Hell, I'd be surprised if he has five given his age. The Falcons are a young up-and-coming team, so it doesn't make sense for them to tear everything down in Belichick's favor only for him to leave/retire in two or three seasons.
Meanwhile, Morris, 47, is young enough to relate better to Atlanta's younger players and could potentially be around for years to come. Again, Belichick likely would've given the Falcons a better chance to win now, but Blank has the franchise's long-term goals in mind.
As Super Bowl LVIII nears, there are only two NFL head coaching vacancies remaining: the Washington Commanders and Seattle Seahawks. Given how far away those teams are from being Super Bowl contenders, we'll likely have to wait until 2025 to find out Belichick's next coaching gig.
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