Patriots legend Vince Wilfork knows exactly how the Jerod Mayo era will go

Baltimore Ravens v New England Patriots
Baltimore Ravens v New England Patriots / Maddie Meyer/GettyImages

When Robert Kraft made the shocking decision to move on from Bill Belichick as the head coach of the New England Patriots after 24 years, there were a lot of concerns about who would be his successor.

How do you find an adequate replacement for the best head coach in the history of the game? And who would want to be the next man up to step into those very big shoes?

It's a job not many would want, despite the opportunity to be named head coach in the NFL. However, Kraft knew exactly who the right guy for the job was, naming former linebacker and current inside linebacker's coach Jerod Mayo to the role within days of Beichick's departure.

It was a decision met with a lot of criticism, not just because of Kraft skipping the interviewing of outside prospects entirely, but because of Mayo's inexperience in his coaching career. He hadn't been a coordinator yet, which is the background many first time head coaches have before being promoted to the role.

On top of that, some were concerned about his age becoming a hindrance, which is a bit ironic considering the rise in younger head coaches around the league. Must we not forget the success of LA Rams' Sean McVay, Eagles' Nick Siriani, and Bengals' Zac Taylor?

Fortunately, those who know Mayo the best don't buy into whatever worries others are drawing up, including his longtime former teammate Vince Wilfork, who spoke to Musket Fire recently to discuss the Patriots outlook and his partnership with Kingsford.

Patriots legend Vince Wilfork knows exactly how the Jerod Mayo era will go

If there was anyone who could help settle the nerves of those who question Mayo's fit as the Patriots' next head coach, who better than a legendary player who played alongside him for seven seasons?

Wilfork knows the type of man and player that Mayo is, having been on the team when the Patriots drafted him with their first-round pick in 2008. The linebacker made such an impression upon immediately joining the team that he was a captain as a rookie, a very uncommon accomplishment for players outside of the quarterback.

That's just one of the reasons Wilfork believes Mayo will be a great coach for New England right now and for years to come.

"Everybody knows a middle linebacker is the quarterback of a defense. And that's what he was. And you got to understand, he had guys around him, veteran guys around him with leadership qualities, but he was the one that was Captain. Bill saw it in him. So, I knew right then and there that he would have a successful career, not only a career going into the coaching field, being able to be coached and drafted from the greatest coach of all time.

And now, all of a sudden, he's in the driver's seat. I think that is the perfect situation to be in because I think where he's at in life, with his age and his ability to touch these kids on a younger scale, I think Bill kind of didn't have that because Bill was so old school. But I think right now he is the best situation for us to be in and I think he will be fine."

Much of what Wilfork said has been echoed throughout the offseason by those who have worked with him and even the current roster. Patriots players have already bought into what he's hoping to instill in the locker room and are ready to play hard for their new head coach.

But what kind of coach will he be? Wilfork believes he will have "his own flair."

"Jerod will have to have his own flair. You know, he had to be able to take everything he learned in the coaching world, being up under Bill Belichick and you know, stuff that he wanted, some stuff that he wanted to change and making his own, I think a lot of coaches have problems when they leave from up on the Bill Belichick and they go somewhere, they want to be Bill Belichick. I think Jerod's going to take a different approach. He's going to take, -- some pick and choose what he want to take from what he's learned, but also bring his own flair to the game.

And I think part of that flair to the game is he can understand, and he can relate more than Bill ever could at this point in his career. So I think that alone is gonna get his players to play for him., and it's gonna be, -- I think he's the right man for the job. It's gonna take some time because we're in the rebuilding stage. So, you know, we drafted the quarterback three overall. So it's gonna take some time to groom. But I think... He is the best decision that we did. I think he's the one for the job. "

It's still early in Mayo's tenure, but so far, so good for the young head coach. Based on what Wilfork believes will be the future, it looks like the Patriots are in better hands than they have been in recent years.

Vince Wilfork has teamed up with Kingsford to officially teach Jason Kelce how to slow down and create memories around the grill as he begins his retirement. Check out the hilarious new video below!

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