NFL Rumors: Bill O'Brien will have input on Patriots' additional coaching hires
Report: O'Brien will have input on Pats' additional coaching hires originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
The New England Patriots are doing things differently in 2023.
In 2022, Bill Belichick gave the offensive keys to first-time play-caller Matt Patricia (and to a lesser extent, Joe Judge), and the results were disastrous. So, to start the new year, Belichick hired a legitimate offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach in Bill O'Brien and seemingly will give O'Brien a say in building out a new staff around him.
O’Brien "will have input on further additions" to the Patriots' coaching staff, "including the likely hiring of a new offensive line coach," The Athletic's Jeff Howe reported Thursday. O'Brien's agency in New England's decision-making is "a nod from Bill Belichick that O’Brien will be running the offensive show" in 2023, Howe notes.
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That's certainly welcome news after a dysfunctional 2022 campaign marked by players calling out Patricia and Judge both privately and publicly. But who might the Patriots bring in to assist O'Brien on offense?
Adrian Klemm appears to be a strong candidate for offensive line coach. The current Oregon run-game coordinator/offensive line coach has already met with the Patriots twice and has familiarity with Belichick from his New England playing days (2000 to 2004).
Doug Marrone is another interesting name to watch; the current New Orleans Saints offensive line coach is very close with O'Brien after the two worked together at Alabama in 2021, so perhaps O'Brien would advocate for him as his offensive line coach.
The Patriots also may consider adding either Keenan McCardell or Shawn Jefferson -- who both played under Belichick and interviewed for New England's OC job this month -- as their wide receivers coach, provided O'Brien is on board.
With O'Brien reportedly playing a role in hiring process, don't be surprised if the team brings on someone with a connection to the 53-year-old coach, whose previous stops include Alabama (2020-2021), the Houston Texans (2014-2020) and Penn State (2012-2013).
As for Patricia and Judge? Patricia's future with the team still remains unclear, per our Phil Perry, while Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer reported Thursday on NBC Sports Boston's "Early Edition" that Judge is expected to remain with the team but in a different role.