There has been a lot of speculation about Mike Vrabel's potential return to the Patriots depending on Bill Belichick's future with the franchise. It was said he was Robert Kraft's favorite candidate to succeed the longtime head coach, but conflicting reports stated the Titans and Vrabel were either content with their current working relationship or they weren't.
It has been a confusing few weeks in that regard.
But it seems the pairing wasn't happy after all, as Ian Rapoport just announced the Titans fired Vrabel on Tuesday afternoon.
It's a contrasting decision to what ownership and Vrabel had said recently. They spoke about wanting to work together next year and beyond, which made sense, given they just extended him to a contract through the 2025 season with a team option for 2026.
Since that's no longer in the plans, the Patriots can now pursue the former linebacker if they are interested in bringing him in, whether to replace Belichick like the rumors have suggested or even in a different capacity since Vrabel has been rumored to want to return to his old team.
If Kraft and Belichick choose to part ways, stepping into the role as the next head coach is certainly an option. Another possibility could be to bring him in as an assistant or positional coach with the promise of replacing Belichick when he retires.
Because he's under contract for the 2024 season, allowing him to finish his career in New England would be ideal. Then Vrabel could take over once he retires.
Who knows what will happen, but it seems significant that this move comes just one day after it was rumored Vrabel was interested in coaching for the Patriots. It's hard to say if there's any connection there, but insiders have already said to pay attention to his connection to his old team, which seems to indicate there may be something there.