In what many will call the worst move of his career, Bill Belichick felt the need to sit Malcolm Butler for all but one play last night in Super Bowl LII which may have been a major reason why the Eagles were able to pull of the 41-33 upset. Tom Brady could’ve had his sixth ring and been only the 2nd MVP since Kurt Warner to actually win a Super Bowl.
However; it didn’t happen, they couldn’t stop the Eagles on third down to save their lives last night. But now, we must look ahead to the seemingly gloomy and most likely ugly future of the New England Patriots. As it has been reported, Josh McDaniels will be going to the Colts and Matt Patricia will be going to the Lions. Buuuuuuut, now Josh McDaniels might not be leaving after all? McDaniels apparently hasn’t even told the team that he took the Colts job which begs the question…is McDaniels staying and Belichick leaving?
This is most likely much to do about nothing as McDaniels probably wanted to focus on the Super Bowl and didn’t want to take away from the game which is why we haven’t heard much about it. Even though this story is starting to gain some steam, I can’t really imagine Belichick going out like this, after a stunning Super Bowl loss to a backup quarterback because of a horrid coaching decision. This wouldn’t look good on his hall of fame resume and he knows that, so why do it? There is no hiding it that there is some serious tension at One Patriot Place in Foxoro between Belichick, Brady, and Kraft. So did Belichick make this move out of anger towards the players? Towards Kraft? Did Butler screw up bad this time? Who knows. But I can’t imagine Belichick not coming back to fix this. Not with this many question marks, I feel that he truly wants to leave New England with little to no question marks and in the best possible position going forward.
Another area to look out for is tight end Rob Gronkowski. He wasn’t exactly 100% committed to coming back next season. (Watch and listen below):
I get it, he just came off of a Super Bowl loss and players are emotional and you question many things so I’ll give him slack for that. But I can’t imagine that he’s leaving as of right now, he may have an injury that he’s haunted by (concussion) and doesn’t want to damage it anymore. If that’s the case then yes, I think he should retire if it’s injury related. However; I wouldn’t be surprised if this was a ploy to restructure his contract to get more money. Or did he say this to perhaps leave New England… There was multiple reports that the locker room was split after hearing that Malcolm Butler wouldn’t be playing. Did Gronk perhaps hint at the first shoe to fall in this tension with the Patriots? It would’ve been interesting to see if he would’ve said this if the Patriots won. One thing I do know is that former Patriots cornerback Brandon Browner went off on Bill Belichick’s decision to bench Butler and several Patriots players liked his Instagram post which is very interesting. Do we have some unrest in the locker room in addition to the big 3 of Belichick, Brady, and Kraft?
Are we perhaps starting to see the end of the Patriots reign? Are the players starting to revolt on Belichick? This isn’t the first time we’ve heard of Belichick “losing a locker room.” BUT, I don’t think he’s losing the locker room, not quite yet at least. The Patriots just lost a game that many believed they would blowout their opponent in, emotions are running high and people are saying and doing things without really thinking about the consequences. I think we’ll know a lot more in the coming days and weeks about what the future really holds for the Patriots. I think Brady’s back, Belichick’s back, Gronk’s back, McDaniels will go to Indy, and Patricia will go to Detroit. Either Brian Flores will be promoted to defensive coordinator, or Greg Schiano from Ohio State will come over as multiple reports have said that Schiano might jump ship there and Belichick really loves Schiano, Belichick loved drafting Schiano’s players when he coached at Rutgers.
We just have to wait for the first shoe to drop, and when it does, get the popcorn because watching this unfold just might be one of the most entertaining to date.
Written By: Brian Berard (@RockyBerard)