What former Patriots, NFLers, and others are predicting about Invoice Belichick’s future


“He’s nonetheless an unbelievable coach. He is aware of tips on how to use his expertise after they’re out on the sphere.”

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick prior to an NFL football game, Sunday, Jan. 7, 2024, in Foxborough, Mass.
Invoice Belichick might not return for a twenty fifth season with the Patriots. (AP Picture/Michael Dwyer)

With the Patriots’ depressing 2023 season lastly at an finish, Robert Kraft and New England’s possession have a franchise-shifting resolution to make.

After years of poor drafting and dear personnel strikes, ought to the 4-13 Patriots usher in a brand new period and half methods with future Corridor of Famer Invoice Belichick?

Or is retaining Belichick for a twenty fifth season the perfect plan of action — particularly if the teaching legend opts to cede GM tasks?

As Kraft and the Patriots ponder their subsequent transfer, Belichick’s future presently stands as the highest storyline hovering over the NFL.

Given Belichick’s resume and the impression that his potential dismissal would generate throughout the league, it comes as little shock that a number of former (and present) Patriots, NFL staffers, and media pundits have supplied their opinion of what’s subsequent for the legendary head coach.

Right here’s what some noteworthy names are saying about Belichick and his subsequent transfer in 2024.

Rob Gronkowski

The previous Patriots tight finish and four-time Tremendous Bowl champion echoed his former head coach’s ideas on Monday morning — noting on NBC’s “At present” that Belichick’s most popular vacation spot in 2024 continues to be Foxborough. 

“I do know Coach Belichick positively desires to stick with the New England Patriots. He’s a Patriot for all times. He’s a six-time Tremendous Bowl champion. He’s like grandfathered in,” Gronkowski stated. “I might say it’s all as much as Mr. (Robert) Kraft — what path he desires to go together with the New England Patriots. Ultimately, when it actually comes all the way down to it, I believe he’s gonna maintain coach Invoice Belichick as head coach for no less than one other 12 months… He’s gonna bounce again. 

“He’s simply gotta go on the market this offseason and produce some offensive gamers in after which he’ll be simply fantastic. He’s nonetheless an unbelievable coach. He is aware of tips on how to use his expertise after they’re out on the sphere.”

Gronkowski made an attention-grabbing level final week about his rationale for maintaining Belichick for no less than one other 12 months. 

After Tom Brady left New England in March 2020 and instantly received a Tremendous Bowl with the Buccaneers, Gronkowski believes that the concern of the same situation taking part in out with Belichick might immediate Kraft to keep away from letting his longtime coach go — particularly if he goes to a staff that already boasts loads of expertise. 

“It could simply be so laborious to see Invoice Belichick, Coach Belichick, on one other staff, on one other sideline, being a head coach. It’s simply not a perfect scenario,” Gronkowski defined on the “Up & Adams Present” final week. “Tom Brady already left the New England Patriots and it began going downhill from there.

“After which think about Coach Belichick, one other New England legend, getting let go after which going to a different staff and having success. I simply don’t assume that will sit properly with Mr. Kraft. I believe that’s behind his thoughts, that that’s a risk. And likewise letting him go, figuring out you’re letting go one of many best coaches of all time, it could simply be a tricky resolution to make.”

Rex Ryan

Ryan has had loads of memorable battles with Belichick through the years, serving because the defensive coordinator on a stingy Ravens roster (2005-08) earlier than taking on as head coach of two AFC East foes within the Jets (2009-14) and Payments (2015-16).

However on Sunday, the present ESPN analyst tipped his cap to his longtime teaching foe — telling Belichick to maintain chasing after the NFL’s all-time wins file, be it in New England or elsewhere. Belichick presently has 333 profession wins, with Don Shula holding the file at 347. 

“He nonetheless outcoaches nearly all people on this league. I imply, he actually does. So, he’s good,” Ryan stated Sunday on ESPN. “My recommendation to Invoice could be: retirement is overrated, buddy. Go get the (wins) file. He deserves the file. He’s the best head coach within the historical past of the Nationwide Soccer League. I respect him far more than some other coach I ever went in opposition to. I imply, it was an absolute honor to educate in opposition to him.”

In the end, Ryan does imagine that Belichick will find yourself main one other NFL franchise in 2024. 

“My intestine says that Kraft is able to transfer on. I don’t assume there’s any doubt about it,” Ryan stated Monday morning on ESPN’s “Get Up.” “I’ll say that as a result of he’s had 10 weeks to say, ‘That is my coach and that is the longer term. We’re going to maintain going ahead.’ It’s not gonna occur.”

Devin McCourty

Very like Gronkowski, the longtime Patriots captain acknowledged final week that he doesn’t imagine Belichick is finished in New England.

“I believe clearly while you don’t win and also you’re going to have a top-five choose, there’s gonna be modifications,” McCourty noted on WEEI’s “The Greg Hill Show”. “Such as you positively must do some issues in a different way than they did this 12 months, however I believe it’s going to be actually laborious.

“I’m not saying it doesn’t occur, however in case you requested me proper now, sitting at this level, I don’t really feel such as you stroll away from this season and say, ‘hey if we simply exchange our head coach, we’ll be higher.’ I believe that will be a extremely laborious assertion to make.”

But when New England does decide to chop ties with Belichick, McCourty thinks that Belichick ought to go to a staff the place he may instantly begin piling up wins. 

“I’m selecting the place I believe the perfect quarterback is, so I might say the Chargers,” McCourty stated on NBC’s “Soccer Evening in America” on Sunday. “I believe him with a quarterback that’s able to win… You give Justin Herbert a man that’s telling him, ‘That is what we noticed after we performed in opposition to you. That is what defenses are going to do to remove what you do properly.’ The sky’s the restrict.”

David Andrews 

Although the veteran heart admitted after Sunday’s 17-3 loss to the Jets that he nonetheless feels he has “one thing within the tank,” the 31-year-old offensive lineman admitted that he plans to relaxation and reset earlier than figuring out his subsequent transfer within the NFL.

Talking to MassLive.com’s Karen Guregian on Monday, Andrews acknowledged that Belichick’s future in New England may additionally decide whether or not or not he desires to return for an additional season in Foxborough. He nonetheless has one 12 months remaining on his contract in New England. 

“That’s most likely someplace on the record,” Andrews informed Guregian of Belichick’s resolution. “I simply have a lot appreciation for him. Clearly, I’ve performed a variety of soccer with coach. I’m very appreciative. I do know what’s anticipated. I believe we see the sport very related, how we need to try to play the sport. So it’s very comfy for me. He taught me tips on how to play the sport. So we’ll see.”

Colin Cowherd

Regardless of Belichick’s sterling monitor file as a head coach, Fox Sports activities’ Colin Cowherd believes that New England is in determined want of a full organizational retool after a disastrous 2023 season.

“It’s important to determine what the issue is,” Cowherd stated. “In New England, the place can we begin? How about all the pieces? The offensive roster is weak, the talent stage is low. The workers? Not superb. They’ll’t draft the final decade. It’s a dated, tone-deaf defensive tradition in an offensive league. Congrats — construct Grumpy Invoice a statue. Giving them a brand new coordinator just isn’t fixing the issues. They’ve bought main points in all places.

“And the draw back in life to those that acquire energy — ultimately you’ll be held accountable. Invoice is. He managed each inch of this franchise, they usually didn’t rating a landing in 5 of their video games.

“Blow it up, get an offensive-leaning coach, sensible younger individuals who aren’t tone-deaf to the suitable aspect of the ball. Cease spending all of your cash on protection. Go get a quarterback, draft one and elevate him and get a workers — no one associated to the coach. Sorry. That’s the way in which the perfect operations are run. Get an actual scouting division. It is a full demo.”

Bailey Zappe

Regardless of main New England to 2 wins in his six begins to shut out the 2023 season, it stays to be seen if Bailey Zappe will stay as New England’s QB1 in the beginning of the 2024 season. 

As famous by Boston.com’s Khari Thompson, Zappe did end this season with a decrease QBR, quarterback ranking, completion proportion, and fewer yards per accomplished go than Mac Jones.

However even when New England does decide to both draft a quarterback in April, commerce for one, or signal a signal-caller in free company, Zappe nonetheless supplied his endorsement of Belichick on Monday morning. 

“He’s the best coach of all time, however that’s above my pay grade,” Zappe stated. “I’ll let these guys deal with these issues if he’s right here, if he’s not right here. After all that’s coach Belichick and Mr. Kraft’s resolution.”

Ian Rapoport & Tom Pelissero

Longtime NFL insider Ian Rapoport was intrigued by Belichick’s feedback on Monday, particularly because it pertained to his resolution to disclose that he’s nonetheless beneath contract by the Patriots.

Contemplating that Belichick has repeatedly been tight-lipped in terms of matters resembling contracts, Rapoport speculated that Belichick’s resolution to share that data does give him some leverage in his ongoing chess match in opposition to Kraft and the Patriots.

“The factor that struck me was that he talked about he’s beneath contract. Invoice Belichick nearly by no means mentions his contract standing,” Rapoport stated Monday morning on “NFL Complete Entry.” “What that stated to me is it type of places the ball in proprietor Robert Kraft’s court docket saying, ‘Invoice Belichick is beneath contract and needs to remain, if the Krafts don’t need him to remain, then there’s a transfer they will make, basically firing him.’ 

“What this did was principally, in type of an odd means, put them on discover to be like, ‘If you would like change, you’re going to must make it.’ I believed that was an enchanting approach to deal with it and I believe anybody who is aware of Invoice Belichick and has identified him for the final twenty years, as all of us have, that type of raised the eyebrows somewhat bit.”

Fellow NFL Media reporter Tom Pelissero supplied the same response to Belichick’s resolution to debate his contract, noting that it places the main target squarely on Kraft because the Patriots proprietor mulls his resolution.

“Belichick struck a really particular tone,” Pelissero stated on NFL Community’s “Good Morning Soccer” on Monday. “He famous that he stays beneath contract… A method you actually can learn these feedback is after months of hypothesis about Robert Kraft would possibly need to do, what Invoice Belichick would possibly need to do, doubtlessly going and training some place else, which he dismissed as a hypothetical that he wouldn’t deal with, whereas making these feedback ‘I’m beneath contract, I’m persevering with to do my job, I’m for no matter is greatest for this soccer staff.’

“That now places the choice again on Robert Kraft’s plate. In different phrases, ‘If I’m not again as head coach, go ask Robert Kraft why it didn’t work.’”