Bill Belichick willing to relinquish Patriots personnel authority

While several head coach-needy teams are lining up for Bill Belichick’s services, there has been no news on the coach’s future in New England. While both sides may still be on the verge of divorce, it appears like the renowned head coach is willing to make concessions in order to remain with the Patriots. Belichick confessed to reporters after Sunday’s regular-season finale that he was considering handing up his personnel power.

“Look, I’m for whatever we collectively decide as an organization is the best thing to help our football team,” Belichick told ESPN’s Mike Reiss. “I have several roles in that, and I rely on a number of people to assist me with those tasks; someone needs to make the final decision. Whatever the process is, I’m just a part of it.”

Bill Belichick willing to relinquish Patriots personnel authority
Bill Belichick willing to relinquish Patriots personnel authority

When asked about his work situation and if he will be continuing with the team, Belichick stated that he is still “under contract” and will continue to function as usual. When asked if owner Robert Kraft had offered any indication that he would return next season, Belichick reacted in usual form.

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“I learned [a] lesson from my father growing up: you work for the team you’re on and give your best for it, until someone tells you otherwise. So that is not going to change,” he explained. There has recently been a perception that Belichick “hasn’t lost his fastball” on the sideline, with the majority of the criticism centered on his lack of success with recent personnel moves.

Bill Belichick willing to relinquish Patriots personnel authority
Bill Belichick willing to relinquish Patriots personnel authority

Over the last ten seasons, the Patriots have drafted only three players who have gone on to make the Pro Bowl (guard Joe Thuney, punter Jake Bailey, and quarterback Mac Jones), and the team’s spending spree during the 2021 offseason has had mixed returns.

Belichick’s personnel decisions extend beyond the players on the field. The coach was chastised for how he handled Josh McDaniels’ departure last season, with Belichick oddly appointing a former defensive coordinator (Matt Patricia) and a former special teams coordinator (Joe Judge) to lead his offense. The results were dismal, prompting Kraft to insist that Belichick bring on former offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien.

 

Bill Belichick willing to relinquish Patriots personnel authority
Bill Belichick willing to relinquish Patriots personnel authority

While Belichick obliged, he gave O’Brien little leeway in running the operation, causing conflict within the coaching staff during the 2023 season. Jones has also suffered as a result of the lack of coaching stability, as he has taken significant steps backward in each of the previous two seasons.

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