3 potential successors to Bill Belichick for the New England Patriots

New England Patriots v Philadelphia Eagles
New England Patriots v Philadelphia Eagles / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages

Bill Belichick is set to enter his 24th season with the New England Patriots, and he could be nearing the end. The Patriots have to assume that he does not have many years left, and you would have to think that they have many succession plans in place.

For this exercise, I wanted to include realistic options as well as a few long shots. Here are three potential successors to Bill Belichick.

Jerod Mayo

If you were to ask most Patriots fans who they want to be the next coach of the Patriots, I guarantee they would say Jerod Mayo. The Patriots drafted Mayo in 2008, and he spent his entire eight-year career in New England. After retiring, Mayo joined the Patriots as an inside linebackers coach in 2019, and he has worked his way up to be the de facto Defensive Coordinator. 

Mayo is the ideal fit to replace Belichick because he understands the Patriot culture as well as the Patriot way. Also, most players respect Mayo, so I don’t think he would need to win over the locker room. Mayo could be the key to getting the Patriots back to the mountaintop in the post-Belichick era.

Mike Vrabel

My top choice to be the successor to Belichick is Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel. Although getting Vrabel is a long shot, the Patriots would have to strongly consider it. Vrabel spent eight years as a player under Belichick, and he won three Super Bowls. Vrabel also was recently named to the Patriots Hall of Fame, which is a tremendous honor.

Vrabel is my top choice because he has done a great job with the Titans. Vrabel has won at a high level with Ryan Tannehill at quarterback, which is what he would need to do with Mac Jones. Also, I think Vrabel has the character and makeup to truly handle the pressure and challenges of being the successor to Belichick.

Although Vrabel signed an extension with the Titans last offseason, I wonder what would happen if Robert Kraft gave him a call.

Josh McDaniels

Josh McDaniels is a potential successor to Belichick because he was supposed to be the next guy. The whole point of the Patriots convincing McDaniels not to take the Indianapolis Colts job in 2018, was to have him be the successor to Belichick. The only reason this did not happen was because Belichick decided to coach longer.

I think McDaniels is in play to be the next guy because there is no guarantee that he lasts long with the Las Vegas Raiders. McDaniels has a poor track record as a head coach, so I would not be surprised if the Raiders fired him after next season.

McDaniels would be a perfect fit with Jones because they had success together in 2021.