Albert Breer is very well-connected, and recent quotes from coaches and executives around the league spell out the harsh truth about the New England Patriots. Breer released his NFL Week 5 Takeaways article on si.com, and it was not kind to the New England Patriots.
It's pretty clear at this point that the franchise is hurting. The team is 1-4, staring down the barrel of another losing season, and in need of a full makeover. Bill Belichick is solely responsible for the mess that the 2023 New England Patriots are. He is the GM and the head coach of this team. Sure, the players shoulder some of the blame, but Belichick put them there.
And there's really no mystery as to why the Patriots are as bad as they are. Breer got some spicy quotes from various coaches and executives around the NFL. Here's what some had to say about the 1-4 squad:
"“Quite simply, they have no talent,” says one AFC executive. “And it doesn’t help that that’s at the quarterback spot as well.”"- AFC Executive
"“The offensive line is bad, they can’t protect Mac [Jones], and Mac can’t move,” says an NFC executive. “They have no speed on offense at the skill positions. They used to have guys that could win one-on-one matchups; they don’t have any of those guys anymore. And defensively, they’re banged up. Losing [Matthew] Judon hurts. Losing the rookie corner [Christian Gonzalez] hurts, too, along with Marcus Jones.”"- NFC Executive
"“They look extremely low on talent, to be honest,” says an NFC coach. “They have a pretty vanilla plan from what I can tell. An average-at-best QB only exacerbates those issues. They aren’t exactly world-beaters on defense now either—and losing Judon really hurt, and the two feed off each other. Defense gets a stop, offense goes three-and-out, defense back out there, basically no rest. … None of their skill players scare me. Hunter Henry is solid, not close to elite. OL looks sh--ty. Backs are slow. Receivers are overpaid free agents."- NFC Coach
I mean, this is what many of us have been saying for a while now. It's pretty clear that when Tom Brady was still here, he was truly covering up some of the major swings and misses that Belichick had. Brady was awesome-- perhaps the greatest professional athlete of all time, but when he left, things began to crumble. The 2020 season was no good, and I think the newness of the roster and a rookie QB in 2021 allowed the Patriots to enjoy some success.
The team was no good in 2022, and they might be even worse in 2023. This team is not going to magically turn this thing around in one offseason; that just will not happen. Every team at some point will go through some lean years in a rebuilding process, and for the Patriots, that needs to happen this offseason. Gut the roster down to the studs, bring in a new front office and coaching staff, and get this thing right.