This offseason is less than 72 hours old and already it’s bat bleep crazy. Seconds after the game Belichick gave a very vague explanation why Malcolm Butler was benched for the Super Bowl, a move which might have cost the team the championship. Former and current players have spoken out in one way or another against the move, leaving fans to speculate if there is a deep rift between Bill and his players. Then, Matt Patricia, who greatly disappointed in the Super Bowl, leaves as expected to take the Lions job. And finally, Josh McDaniels accepts the position as head coach of Indianapolis only to change his mind, staying with the Patriots.
What the hell is going on in Foxboro?
For the Patriots, this is a great move. First, they keep some continuity on the offensive side of the ball. With Brady down to his last few years (I think) in football, changing the system now would be devastating for the teams short term success. Potentially, anyway. Keeping Josh around means everyone knows what to do to keep the juggernaut humming along nicely. Additionally, this might answer the question: who takes over for when Bill eventually decides to retire? I believe, as I mentioned in my last blog about Josh, there was some sort of gentleman’s agreement to keep him here with the understanding that he would take over for BB. Now, there’s no evidence to say that’s true, although I’ve seen conflicting reports- some say there is, some say there isn’t. UPDATE TO THE UPDATE: According to many sources, it appears the plan is for Bill to step down and Josh will take over, whenever that may be. At least not for next year.
Early reports indicated Josh was sticking around because he appreciates continuity for his family’s sake. He wanted to stay in the area and not uproot his family once again. Side note: I find it very interesting people get into coaching and are turned off by the idea of moving around, when in fact that’s probably the only guarantee you can get from the profession. You will move. Many times. Either way, Josh wanted to stay and take advantage of the good situation he has here and now, according to reports, will be assured the job of head coach once Bill does indeed retire. He can ascend to the position with hopefully a good foundation to build from. Certainly, he’ll have the support of ownership and the players on the team, whoever is left once the day comes.
I’m not entirely sure how I feel about Josh McDaniels one day becoming head coach of the Patriots. I think by then, Brady will be gone. Bill obviously will be gone. Perhaps Gronk will be gone, too. What will this team look like? Will Josh understand that in order to continue the success he’s enjoyed, not only does his offense need to maintain its dynamic schemes, but he will have to revamp this defense and make it a force like it was years ago. Without Brady, this team will have to be stronger defensively and that means at every level.
With this news, I believe we will not have to worry about that problem for another couple years. For now, we can watch this organization retool and plan for 2018 and hopefully another run at a Lombardi trophy. Welcome back, Josh. We missed ya! Briefly.