Could Patriots lose Josh McDaniels and Dave Ziegler to the Raiders?

New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels looks on with head coach Bill Belichick Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports
New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels looks on with head coach Bill Belichick Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports /

With Bill Belichick at the helm, the New England Patriots haven’t played a part in the NFL’s annual coaching carousel in over two decades.

However, being the most successful team in the league during that span isn’t without its downsides. Every offseason, the Patriots have coordinators and executives interview for head coach and general manager vacancies.

While we’ve yet to hear much buzz concerning the latter, both offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and inside linebackers coach Jerod Mayo are in the mix for the Raiders’ HC job, according to the latest reports.

Mayo has interviewed with the Broncos, too, but let’s keep the conversation focused on McDaniels for the time being.

After all, if director of player personnel Dave Ziegler bolts for Las Vegas, he could bring McDaniels with him, says ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Could the Patriots lose Josh McDaniels and Dave Ziegler to the Las Vegas Raiders this offseason?

Schefter floated the idea during an appearance on WEEI Radio’s “The Greg Hill Show” on Monday. No, the Raiders haven’t requested to interview McDaniels yet, but that could change in the blink of an eye and their interest is real.

"“I don’t believe that as of this morning the Raiders have even put in a permission slip,” Schefter said. “Until they do, it’s not real. But if they do, then I would say it’s on. I think Dave Ziegler is right in the thick of that. I think if Dave Ziegler takes that job, it’s only logical to deduce that he would have interest in Josh. So that’s something that just continues to float out there. We’ll see what the Raiders decide to do, but yes, that’s probably wise to pay attention to.”"

Based on Schefter’s comments, it sounds like McDaniels’ departure will hinge on whether Ziegler is hired by the Raiders. Per reports, Ziegler interviewed for the Las Vegas job on Friday, so the tires have certainly been kicked.

As a follow-up question, co-host Chris Curtis asked Schefter whether Belichick could do anything to prevent McDaniels from leaving. The insider’s answer won’t thrill fans who’d like to see McDaniels continue to develop Mac Jones.

"“I don’t think there’s anything Bill could do to get in the way of Josh becoming head coach of the Raiders, if that’s what Josh wants to do,” Schefter said. “If Josh wants to become the head coach of the Raiders, he’s going to be the head coach of the Raiders — if Dave gets the job.”“I kind of think there’s a little bit of a connection there between the two. If the Raiders go that direction with Dave, I would think — we’re making assumptions — if Dave gets the job, then why would he not be interested in Josh? And if he’s interested in Josh, I don’t know what Bill could do.”"

The Patriots have been in this position before.

Last offseason, they watched former director of player personnel Nick Caserio get poached by Houston. It goes without saying the Raiders’ job is much more attractive. Assuming the interview went well and Las Vegas makes Ziegler a viable offer, could fans really blame him for taking the job?

Probably not.

As for McDaniels, it’s truly unknown whether he wants to coach again. It would likely take the perfect situation, and working in Las Vegas with a familiar face in Ziegler as the GM and one of the richest owners in the NFL in Mark Davis could be what finally convinces him to leave the Belichick nest.

Though, as we’ve seen with McDaniels specifically, there could always be an unexpected out clause at the last minute.