Bill O’Brien’s contract with the University of Alabama expires at the end of this month, and has yet to be renewed. Upon hiring, it was speculated that O’Brien would serve the standard two years in Nick Saban’s Second Chance Home for Wayward an Dissolute Coaches, then jump back to head coaching ranks, either with a major college program or with the NFL. It is the latter that has always held the most interest for BoB, and even when Penn State recruited him off the Pats staff, it was feared he would leap back to the Shield given the first opportunity.
Things didn’t quite work out as expected in Houston, and he was essentially gifted to the Tide from Bill Belichick.
Now, after a disastrous year with Matt Patricia in Boston, and an inconsistent one with BoB in Tuscaloosa, it seems as though the long-rumored O’Brien-to-New-England decision is soon to be upon us.
O’Brien interviewed yesterday with the Pats. Nor is this clickbait rumor mill stuff. It was even reported by the league’s imprint, NFL.com:
The New England Patriots might be one step closer toward bringing back an old friend to run the offense.
Bill O’Brien, who was New England’s play-caller more than a decade ago, has interviewed for the team’s vacant offensive coordinator position, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Thursday.
O’Brien, 53, has spent the past two seasons as the offensive coordinator at University of Alabama under Nick Saban, with O’Brien’s two-year contract with the Crimson Tide reportedly ending after their Sugar Bowl victory. He took the job after his run as Houston Texans head coach and general manager ended early in the 2020 season after O’Brien amassed a regular-season record of 52-48 and a playoff mark of 2-4 in Houston.
The reason this has always been speculated to happen is that O’Brien did not renew his contract after Bryce Young won the Heisman Trophy; he was tepid to college jobs, despite interest from several suitors; and — more importantly, like Tom Bodett, the Patriots left a light on for him.
When Josh McDaniels left for the Raiders, the Pats did not fill the OC spot with a competent, experienced OC. Rather, Belichick decided to ride it out with two Pats retreads: the recently fired Matt Patricia as OC, and the recently fired Joe Judge as QBC.
The results have been disastrous, to say the least, and both positions are vacant once again. The pair of idgits retarded the growth of the entire QB room, particularly frustrating Mac Jones, who very publicly went after Patricia on many occasions.
We might see some very fast action on this move, however. There are ten NFL franchises with OC vacancies — almost a third of the league.
And if New England doesn’t jump, someone almost certainly will.
Current NFL teams (10!) with offensive coordinator vacancies ...— SN's Vinnie Iyer (@vinnieiyer) January 19, 2023
NFC: Cardinals: Rams, Buccaneers, Commanders
AFC: Ravens, Colts, Chargers, Patriots, Jets, Titans
What team is best suited for BoB’s pass-heavy approach?
This poll is closed
TRICK QUESTION: It’s Alabama