The Patriots have done the seemingly impossible by only increasing and adding to the drama and intrigue since losing Super Bowl 52. Josh McDaniels spurned the Colts after a long sit-down with Robert and Jonathan Kraft and Bill Belichick and will remain with the team.
Belichick is still locked for 2018 according to Mike Reiss, but it would appear McDaniels is now the successor-in-waiting, even if no assurances were made.
Source close to situation says clarity on Bill Belichick’s status in New England (Belichick is locked in to coach Patriots in 2018) and stability for family among top factors for Josh McDaniels’ sudden change.
— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) February 7, 2018
Given how the Super Bowl unfolded I think pretty much everyone can agree it was on defense where the changes were most needed. McDaniels and Brady have a special relationship as we saw in Tom vs. Time — keeping that intact for the rest of Brady’s career will ensure they squeeze every last bit out of the quarterback.
Brady and McDaniels can just keep on trucking, welcoming back Julian Edelman and Malcom Mitchell to an already-deep group.
The questions for them start at tackle and running back. I would bet a two-year deal like they did with Matt Light in 2011 makes sense with Solder. Then it’s a coin toss with either Dion Lewis or Rex Burkhead. Keep one, add in mid/low-level free agency and draft. It will be interesting to see how they evolve.
After almost losing everyone but Belichick, getting back McDaniels and all the coaches he was taking with him (ST Joe Judge, QB Jerry Shuplinski) is a welcome relief. I don’t know what exactly it means for Belichick, whether he plans on transitioning to more of a general manager role or just peacing out, but it appears McDaniels will be the next head coach, maybe as soon as 2019.