Surprising Patriots staffer prevented Bill Belichick's earlier firing

New England Patriots Press Conference
New England Patriots Press Conference / Maddie Meyer/GettyImages

Among the many shocking allegations made in ESPN's latest chapter of an offseason packed full of anti-Bill Belichick propaganda was the reveal of the head coach's potential earlier firing. Although it wasn't a totally unexpected revelation, the decision to fire him was sold to fans as a difficult decision that had just been agreed upon, not something that had been up for consideration over a year in advance.

In the bombshell article, Don Van Natta Jr., Seth Wickersham and Jeremy Fowler suggest Robert Kraft had almost made the move after the 2022 season, but a shocking staffer prevented him from following through.

Who was that staffer? None other than Jonathan Kraft, who has been reported as one of the biggest Belichick detractors behind the scenes over the last few years.

Perhaps his effort to stop his father from firing the head coach was before his feelings toward him boiled over, but the fact he is alleged to be the reason Belichick remained with the team for another year is a wild turn of events after all that has been said this offseason.

"Winning a Super Bowl after trailing 28-3 or with the opponent a yard away from the game-winning touchdown requires a head coach who refuses to concede to the inevitable. For most of the 2023 season, when chatter around the league was that Belichick was in his final season in New England, he believed he could turn it around and coach the Patriots in 2024, serving the final year of a two-year contract reported to be worth $25 million a year. A source close to Robert Kraft said he considered moving on from Belichick after the 2022 season, but Jonathan Kraft talked him out of it."

The fact that Jonathan is said to be the leading force to keep Belichick around for at least another season is intriguing on its own, but why he may have done that trumps that more. The relationship between the pair was said to be tense and to the point of not speaking to each other last year.

So what caused it to fall apart after Kraft ensured his father didn't fire the head coach? We'll probably never know, but maybe it's for the best.

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