Patriots

Could Matt Patricia transition to the Patriots’ offensive coaching staff?

ESPN's Mike Reiss said the idea has "come up in conversations with smart NFL personnel."

Bill Belichick and Matt Patricia chat before a game in 2015. Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Matt Patricia spent this past season as a senior football advisor for the Patriots – a new role for someone who’s had many.

Patricia, who was New England’s defensive coordinator from 2012-2017, recently completed his 15th season with the organization. He was the Lions’ head coach for two-plus seasons before returning to Foxborough last year, and ESPN’s Mike Reiss said he could be a possible fit in an offensive role going forward.

Meanwhile, a lot has happened in New England this offseason. Former Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels is now the Raiders’ head coach, and he hired Patriots receivers coach Mick Lombardi to be his offensive coordinator. Offensive line coach Carmen Bricillo and quality control/quarterbacks coach Bo Hardegree are also heading to Las Vegas, and running backs coach Ivan Fears may retire.

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The Patriots recently hired Joe Judge as an offensive assistant, but it’s currently unclear who will call plays. They may look for a new offensive coordinator such as Bill O’Brien, or they may rely on the pieces they already have and not officially name one.

Reiss believes there’s a chance Patricia could help fill the void in Bill Belichick’s eyes.

“Few, if any, truly know what Belichick is thinking,” Reiss wrote. “But the possibility of Patricia joining the offensive staff in some capacity has come up in conversations with smart NFL personnel projecting Belichick’s next move.”

Reiss pointed out that the Patriots appear likely to retain the core of their defensive staff but are losing “elite institutional brainpower” on offense. He said a combination of Patricia and Judge may end up appealing to Belichick.

The familiarity and fit are there, but Reiss pointed out that Patricia’s last time on the offensive side of the ball was in 2004-05 as an offensive assistant/assistant offensive line coach in New England. Judge was an offensive assistant for one year, in 2019, when he coached the Patriots’ receivers. Neither has called offensive plays in the NFL.

Patricia may stay put, Reiss said, and help assist in the transition after the departure of director of player personnel Dave Ziegler. He also could emerge as someone to help take command of the offense.

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“A move to more of a pure coaching role on offense is a scenario that bears watching,” Reiss wrote, “especially with so many offensive coaches moving on.”

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