What Does The Future Hold For The Patriots?
What Does The Future Hold For the Patriots?
Normally at this time of the year, we are wondering if New England will repeat as Super Bowl champs, well thanks to some daring play calls and an Eagles team that was able to match them stride for stride the Patriots are facing some different questions and the future isn’t so clear.
New England will be having someone else calling the defense as Matt Patricia left to take over the Detroit Lions, CB Malcolm Butler will almost assuredly hit the open market, Tom Brady will be 41 when the new season starts in August and it appears offensive coordinator Josh Mc Daniels, who spurned the Indianapolis Colts to stay with New England is being groomed to be Bill Belichick’s successor. It has also been rumored that TE Rob Gronkowski is mulling retirement, which would not be a surprise considering all the injuries and players suffering from CTE. He would walk away with a couple of rings, and a fledgling movie career waiting. Couple that with the usual roster turnover that accompanies every NFL team and you has the makings of a pretty abnormal offseason for New England.
Oh, did I forget to mention Brady doesn’t have a successor on the current roster.
Let’s take a look at some of these changes.
Patricia has been running the D since 2012, and the Patriots tried to lure Greg Schiano from Ohio St, only to be turned down. Patricia’s defense was shredded by Jacksonville and Philadelphia so maybe a change was in order. Their defense has always be a system fit with players, in recent years their offense has carried them.
Tom Brady will be another year older, and even though he still performing at a high level father time will eventually catch up with him.
They will have to replace a CB that played in 98% of the defensive snaps, which is no small feat in a pass happy league.
I think the biggest decision that will affect them is if Gronkowski decides to retire. He is such a difference maker, he singlehandedly kept his team in the game with his third quarter performance on Sunday. The Patriots are famous for replacing stars, through the draft and low cost free agency, but if he decides to retire that could sink New England’s ship.
And finally are we seeing Belichick’s tenure in New England coming to a close? Most coaches don’t last a 1/3 of the time he has been in New England, but again most coaches aren’t him.
We will see if Mc Daniels’s gets more authority next season, and his actions and role will definitely give us a clue as to how close Belichick is close to moving on.
You would think Belichick wouldn’t leave Robert Kraft high and dry, but in the “what have you done for me now” world of the NFL relationships go sour as fast as Nick Foles running a trick play in a Super Bowl. Coaches can see their next opportunity ahead, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see Bill take a year off, go play golf in Florida and come back with a vengeance, ala Bill Parcells. Stay tuned, the drama is just starting in New England!
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