It turns out that Bill Belichick was reportedly a big factor in Josh McDaniels’s decision to pull out of the Indianapolis Colts job at the last second.
According to ESPN’s Mike Reiss, Belichick promised McDaniels in a Tuesday morning meeting that he would be more active in mentoring his offensive coordinator, including spending more time on the Patriots’ roster construction and handling of the salary cap. McDaniels viewed this as “extremely valuable,” a source told Reiss, even if he wasn’t given iron-clad assurances that he will be Belichick’s eventual successor.
McDaniels also appreciated the stability that the Patriots offered, which would allow his children, the oldest of which being 12, the chance to stay in the same school for the foreseeable future.
Reiss notes that McDaniels had been ready to take the Colts job as of Tuesday morning, but the Belichick meeting swayed him. He also says that, had McDaniels had all this information during the entire interview process, he’d have likely handled things differently. That last bit certainly lends some credence to the theory that owner Robert Kraft was trying to stick it to a rival after letting this go on for a while.
While McDaniels hasn’t been named coach-in-waiting, it certainly sounds like the Patriots would like such an arrangement to happen. They’re just not marrying themselves to it.
When Josh McDaniels made the stunning decision to back out of his agreement to become the next head coach of the Colts, the assumption immediately became that he is the head coach in waiting with the Patriots. That may be the case, but what if Bill Belichick is nowhere close to retiring?
Several credible reports have indicated that Belichick will be back in 2018. Beyond that, no one really knows how much longer the 65-year-old intends to coach. But for what it’s worth, an acquaintance of Belichick told The MMQB’s Peter King at the Super Bowl that he believes Belichick has “multiple years” left in New England.
A source close to the story said late Tuesday night that, as part of his agreement to stay in New England, McDaniels got no written assurance that he will succeed the 65-year-old Belichick when he walks away from the job. No one knows when that will be. Belichick will coach at least this year, and at the Super Bowl last week, one longtime Belichick acquaintance said he thought Belichick would coach multiple years in New England, despite the reports of discord between him and Kraft.
King believes it is safe to assume that McDaniels will be offered the Patriots head coaching job if he is still on the staff when Belichick moves on, but it’s impossible to predict when that will happen. If Belichick sticks around for, say, five more years, who’s to say McDaniels won’t have gotten another head coaching offer by then and follow through with it this time?
You could make the argument that McDaniels will have a tough time landing a head coaching job outside of New England after the stunt he pulled, but quality head coaches are tough to come by in the NFL. If a team believes he’s the man for the job, the ugly Colts mess won’t be a deal-breaker.
We have already heard multiple reasons why McDaniels supposedly changed his mind about Indy, and they go beyond him wanting to be the eventual replacement for Belichick.
Bill Belichick may have had an understandable reason for not allowing Malcolm Butler to play a single defensive snap in the Super Bowl, but it seems clear that the Patriots coach could have done a better job of communicating it to the team.
After their 41-33 loss to the Eagles, New England players gave inconsistent answers about whether or not they knew Butler would be benched. Eric Rowe, who started in place of Butler, said he found out right before kickoff. Devin McCourty indicated that he knew on Saturday night, which could mean Belichick told his team captains but not the entire team. But what about Butler himself?
According to Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald, Belichick informed Butler before kickoff that he would not play, but he did not give the star cornerback a reason for the decision. Sources told Howe that everyone — players included — has been left guessing after Belichick claimed the decision was strictly related to football, which led to tension in the locker room.
While Belichick has said Butler was not benched for disciplinary reasons, reports indicate the 27-year-old broke a team rule related to curfew and had some other issues throughout the week. Michael Giardi of NBC Sports Boston told 98.5 The Sports Hub’s “Toucher and Rich Show” on Tuesday that Butler broke curfew in Minneapolis. Former Patriots offensive lineman Dan Koppen, who is now Giardi’s colleague, told Giardi that curfew is one rule Belichick takes seriously and will not make exceptions with.
If you’re looking to blame either Butler or Belichick for the cornerback not playing, you may have trouble justifying pointing the finger at just one of them. Assuming Butler did break a team rule, you can understand why he didn’t play. However, there would be no reason for Belichick to not explain that to the team if that’s what happened, as the move had a huge impact on the game and may have been the difference between winning and losing.
The way Butler ripped Belichick after the game made it seem as though he was not guilty of violating any team rules, but that could be because Belichick didn’t offer him an explanation. Again, it feels like someone — especially the guys who were preparing for the biggest game of the year — should have been given one.
It’s day one of the offseason and New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick is already fed up with questions about his future.
Belichick was bombarded with questions about whether he’d be back for 2018 on a post-Super Bowl conference call Monday, and he called the repeated questioning “ridiculous.”
Belichick was asked multiple times if he planned to return to coach next season. "I've addressed that question…I'm not going to be asked the same question every day. That's ridiculous."
— Phil Perry (@PhilAPerry) February 5, 2018
Despite persistent rumors to the contrary, Belichick said a month ago that he’d be back. He doesn’t help his own cause with evasive answers to the continued questioning, but that’s just the way he is. In his mind, he’s answered the question once. There’s hardly any need for him to litigate it over and over, especially when he’s going to be focused on fixing what went wrong in the Super Bowl itself.
- Bill Belichick
The Patriots did not execute well enough defensively to beat the Eagles in the Super Bowl on Sunday, but the issues the team appears to be having off the field may be the biggest concern for New England going forward.
After the Patriots were torched on defense in a 41-33 loss, former Pats cornerback Brandon Browner took to Instagram to rip Bill Belichick for benching Malcolm Butler. Dont’a Hightower was among those who “liked” the post.
Browner’s Instagram post was liked by Hightower, Jamie Collins and Alfonzo Dennard pic.twitter.com/uDGIzvcerH
— Mark Daniels (@MarkDanielsPJ) February 5, 2018
Hightower missed most of the season with a torn pectoral muscle. His play in Super Bowl LI last year was a big reason why the Patriots pulled off a miraculous comeback, and he is considered a leader both on the field and in the locker room. It’s definitely noteworthy that he was willing to make his opinion on the Butler situation known publicly.
The Patriots said benching Butler was a coach’s decision. Butler had no problem telling Belichick how he felt about it, and a lot of fans feel the same way. In the wake of reports that Belichick and Tom Brady need to meet during the offseason to work out some issues, it sounds like a divided locker room became an issue in New England over the course of the 2017 season.
Bill Belichick is notoriously tight-lipped, and his quotes after the Super Bowl were no different.
Unsurprisingly, Belichick wouldn’t entertain questions about his future after the New England Patriots’ 41-33 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, preferring to talk about the loss instead.
Asked Bill Belichick if he plans to return in 2018 with Patriots: He said: "I’m just talking about this game."
— Brian Costello (@BrianCoz) February 5, 2018
It’s probably not worth reading too much into this. He’s previously said that he plans to be back for 2018, and though there were some intriguing rumors popping up during the game itself, there isn’t really a lot of reason to believe any of this has changed.
Even if his future is already decided, you’re not going to get a straight answer — or any answer, really — right now. It’s just not the way Belichick does things.
Linda Holliday is at the Super Bowl to cheer on her boyfriend Bill Belichick’s team, and she’s wearing some cool custom gear.
Holliday showed off her special customized jacket in a post on Instagram. The jacket has “Belichick” spelled across the back, as well as two Patriots logos. The Super Bowl LII logo is on the jacket as well.
Take a look:
According to TMZ Sports, Holliday got her custom Patriots/Belichick gear from Bella Artistry. The jacket supposedly has 3,500 crystals on it, which is incredible.
Holliday and Belichick have been together for around 10 years. Belichick was previously married to ex-wife Debby, with whom he has three children.