Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots are refusing to answer what should be a fairly simple offseason question. With Josh McDaniels now the head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders, Belichick is refusing to name an offensive coordinator or play-caller.
Belichick has been famous for not officially naming defensive coordinators for a handful of seasons, but doing so with both coordinator positions despite names like Joe Judge and Matt Patricia on the staff comes across as exceedingly weird. This chaos could impact Mac Jones’ sophomore year.
ProFootballTalk’s Mike Florio has a very unusual theory as to why Belichick is refusing to name anyone to those high-profile positions, though. Florio puts it down to Belichick wanting to hold onto power while also trying to avoid getting some of his most trusted assistants on the proverbial chopping block.
"“I still, at some level, believe that Bill Belichick is trying to centralize responsibility,” Florio said. “He’s trying to reduce the pressure and the scrutiny of the individual assistant coaches. Florio uses his son Stephen, who could be viewed by some as the de facto defensive coordinator, as an example to prove his point.”"
Why is Bill Belichick not promoting Patriots coaches?
Essentially, if Belichick gave assistants the title of offensive or defensive coordinator, fans could start to call for their jobs if the Patriots take a step back in either of those two areas. With Belichick beyond reproach as coach of the Patriots, he’s willing to take all of those slings and arrows.
On the one hand, it’s admirable that Belichick is doing his coordinators a solid by taking all of their criticism for them. On the other, the idea of Belichick refusing to promote someone out of fear that they could be fired if they don’t do their job seems very unlike what the Patriots have done over the last few decades.
Belichick has tried to pull off this no coordinator nonsense before in Cleveland, and it didn’t go very well. If Florio is on to something, Belichick needs to nip it in the bud.
The Patriots are smarter than most organizations, but that doesn’t mean they should throw common sense to the wind and go so far in the opposite direction of what everyone else does that they go without a coordinator. It seems like Belichick just needs to get out of his own head and trust his assistants to do their job.