While the Patriots won in Week 2, questions about the team’s coaching staff — particularly Mac Jones’ coaching and offense — will continue to linger for the foreseeable future.
Not only was the departure of former offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels to the Raiders seen as a major potential problem, but he was combined with a trio of other coaches leaving New England to join McDaniels in Las Vegas.
Former Patriots assistants Mick Lombardi, Carmen Bricillo and Bo Hardegree have all made their offseason outings.
In response, Belichick hired – in part – former head coaches Matt Patricia and Joe Judge to help with the team’s offense.
Has he prioritized ‘stability’ over hiring young coaches this offseason?
“I think we have a good mix of experienced coaches and younger coaches,” Belichick replied.
“Our defensive staff remains pretty much unchanged from where it was last year,” he said.
As for the offense, Belichick praised the experience Judge and Patricia bring and downplayed departures.
“I think the experience that we lost with Josh, Bo, Nick Lombardi and Carmen, we replaced that to some extent and the rest of the staff, there was a lot of continuity,” he said .
“There really wasn’t a lot of turnover, obviously it was mostly on the offensive end of the ball with those four coaches who went to the Raiders.”
The ongoing partnership with Robert Kraft
After Sunday’s win, Belichick presented the game ball to Robert Kraft in the locker room in honor of his 500th game as team owner.
Kraft, who bought the Patriots in 1994 for a then-record $194 million, has presided over an unprecedented level of success for the New England franchise since taking ownership.
Belichick said part of the reason he stayed with the Patriots for so long is because of a similar mindset he has with Kraft.
“Philosophically, we’re on the same page when it comes to team building, contracts and all that kind of stuff that goes into an organization, staffing, structure, etc.,” Belichick said of by Kraft. “We got off to a good start and were able to build a good base here. We had to tweak it along the way for various reasons and changes, but I think that foundation in those early years was really important.
And it never would have happened if Kraft hadn’t signed on with former Patriots coach Bill Parcells (then the Jets’ director of football operations) in 2000 to start negotiating for to acquire Belichick. The OK ultimately resulted in a trade of significant draft picks, including a Patriots first-round pick.
Looking back, Belichick expressed his gratitude.
“I certainly appreciate the opportunity Robert has given me to be here,” he said. “He gave up a lot in terms of draft picks and stuff to make that happen. It was a good opportunity. It certainly worked well for me, so I appreciate it.
Waiting for the Ravens
After two away games to start the 2022 season, the Patriots will play their home opener Sunday at 1 p.m. against the Baltimore Ravens.
Asked about his thoughts on Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson, Belichick started with the obvious.
“Well, he’s fast. It’s one thing,” Belichick said. “No one is going to catch him from behind.”
“As he continues to gain experience, I think his execution of the passing game is good. He has a good group of receivers. They have a nice, unique and complementary style of football of running and shooting. play and quarterback actions where Lamar has the opportunity to make big plays – whether it’s running or getting him out of the pocket, or using play action, which they do very well to complement the racing game.
“It’s a major and very unique weapon,” Belichick added. “They’re doing a good job of structuring their attack to showcase him and present him so he’s a key player that we have to deal with.”