BOSTON (CBS) — Even before ESPN dropped its controversial story about a growing rift between Tom Brady, Bill Belichick and Robert Kraft, it appeared as though some changes would be coming for the New England Patriots.
With the market running hot for offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and defensive coordinator Matt Patricia, and with the market looking like there may be double-digit job openings around the league, it appeared as though a major change (or two) was inevitable.
While the number of available jobs didn’t end up being as high as it originally seemed, WBZ-TV’s Dan Roche said he expects to see a different name or two as a Patriots coordinator next season.
“I think that if they get the right opportunity, I think they both will make the jump,” Roche told CBS Boston’s Michael Hurley. “The most logical one to me is not Josh McDaniels. I think it’s Matt Patricia because of [Detroit GM] Bob Quinn, who was with the Patriots organization for almost 15 years in so many different roles, has a relationship with Patricia. I think maybe in Detroit, I think that’s the one job that I could see Matt Patricia taking.”
As for McDaniels?
“McDaniels is set up for it. Will he go in? I think he has to find it to his liking,” Roche said. “If he loves it, I think he’ll take it. If not, you sit back and you stay with Brady and Belichick.”
Roche and Hurley also, of course, discussed the ESPN story that is sure to remain relevant in New England for many months (and years?) to come.
“I look at it as, what’s the biggest thing that they try to do? What’s the most important thing to Bill Belichick, Robert Kraft and Tom Brady — especially Belichick and Brady? It’s winning,” Roche said. “So I look at that as the biggest thing here. Belichick wants to win now and he wants to win for the future. Tom Brady wants to win today. Jimmy Garoppolo wants to win today. He wants to play.”
Roche said that supreme focus on winning is at the center of the so-called power struggle, which has required some creative solutions from the Patriots.
“That’s how I look at this whole ridiculous back-and-forth, fighting, in-fighting, everything else — Bill’s trying to do what’s best for the team,” Roche said. “He always says that. He’s trying to do what’s best for the franchise, and I just think he ran out of time.”
Hurley added: “And what went wrong was Brady performed too well, which is a pretty good problem to have.”
Putting the long-term future aside, the present offers a massive opportunity for the Patriots.
“You know Belichick, from Day One of this offseason, with no days off, he wants that number six. That will cement his legacy in my mind, maybe in everybody’s mind, the greatest coach, no question about it in the history of the National Football League,” Roche said. “I think that sixth Super Bowl to Kraft, Belichick, Brady — that’s the big one. And they’re this close.”
Tune in to Patriots Game Day on Sunday at 11:30 a.m., and watch Bills-Jaguarsat 1 p.m. on WBZ-TV!