When it comes to unbridled enthusiasm about the New England Patriots, look no further than color commentator Scott Zolak, whose through-the-roof screams have elevated several dynastic moments one extra notch.
In terms of building an offensive coaching staff, though? Pats Nation had better hope that what Zolak put forth in a 98.5 The Sports Hub appearance on Thursday doesn’t come to fruition.
Mac Jones is entering his second year in New England, no matter what Jermaine Wiggins says, and he’ll need a WR1 and an offensive coordinator he believes in to maximize his chances of success.
Jones did have success swapping coordinators at Alabama — just ask his college teammates — but it would be in his best interest to have an experienced guide whispering in his ear this time around after the departure of Josh McDaniels. What about current Alabama coordinator Bill O’Brien, a QB whisperer with Patriots ties who helped lead Tom Brady into his next decade in the early 2010s?
According to Zolak … not so fast. He doesn’t see “Billy” O’Brien coming to New England, and instead predicts several different and unexpected voices will share Jones’ ear.
Patriots announcer Scott Zolak thinks Bill O’Brien is out
Of course, this runs antithetical to conventional wisdom — passing on O’Brien’s services and putting additional responsibilities on the plates of Joe Judge and Matt Patricia, both coming off underwhelming forays into head coaching.
This is also not to mention that Patricia’s defense may have wowed casual observers, but diehard Patriots fans were done with his “bend, don’t break, but also maybe break” style by the time he bolted for Detroit. If he wasn’t so trustworthy on his specialized side of the ball, why should he be coordinating the offensive line and portions of the run game?
And why is this all so needlessly complicated? Haven’t NFL teams solved this type of conundrum for ages by installing an offensive coordinator as a catch-all? Didn’t we learn anything from the Steve/Bill/Jerod defensive masterclass?
If the Patriots’ intention is to expand Judge’s expertise from special teams to an offensive advisory role, we understand.
We still don’t understand why Patricia has failed up from the defense to Detroit to the front office and now the running game, and we certainly can’t comprehend the team refusing to have a veteran guidepost in place for Jones.