Besides the typical debate about whether or not Bill Belichick should remain in New England or move on to another team, another conversation is beginning to gain more steam as the offseason nears.
Maybe it's because the idea of the Patriots severing all ties with the legendary head coach doesn't seem reasonable to some, or the idea of starting completely fresh is beginning to feel more daunting. But it looks like more people are starting to be intrigued with the idea of Robert Kraft offering Belichick a bit of a compromise to keep him on New England's sideline next season.
We know he's signed for at least one more year, as it was reported he received an extension before this season began, so keeping him around for another season won't be an issue. But what if instead of Belichick remaining as the head coach and the general manager, Kraft tried to level with him and allow him to continue as the coach and bring in someone else to take over the managerial duties?
It's a hypothetical situation that Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer wrote about in a piece published on Thursday, suggesting the offer could make things easier between the owner and coach, especially since Kraft is allegedly conflicted on what decision to ultimately make.
And if Belichick isn't interested in dropping the GM title, Kraft has the answer he needs to move on completely.
"But I could see a scenario where Patriots owner Robert Kraft goes to Belichick and lays it out like this: We were going to restructure football ops after you retired, so rather than waiting for that, we’re going to do it now. I’m hiring a general manager. You won’t report to him, but he won’t report to you, either. Both of you will report to me, and you will work together, with his job being to build the roster up to 90, and your job being to cut it down to 53. If you want to be a part of that, great. If not, we can find a graceful way to end this."
It would be quite a compromise, but given the pair's longstanding working relationship, it seems more than appropriate for this offer to be on the table. And it may be the best route to take if the premise of starting from scratch next season isn't appealing to Kraft, even if that may be exactly what the team needs to get back on track.
Although the possibility of Belichick accepting the proposal to remain just the head coach is kind of difficult to imagine, primarily since he's held GM duties for two decades, it might entice him enough to stay where he is instead of heading to a new team and starting over at 71 years old.
Some have suggested it wouldn't be a good look for the franchise or him to forfeit the title, but if he wants to stay in New England, it may be his only option.