Last year, after McDaniels left to go fuck up Las Vegas, Bill Belichick made what the vast majority of people would consider a dumb choice. He hired back former mediocre defensive coordinator and failure head coach Matt Patricia, to be his offensive coordinator. I don’t know anyone who thought this was a good move. The best any hopeless optimist could say was “well, it might work out” with the same kind of tone you have when you get a multiple-choice question on a test and have no idea which answer it is so you blindingly fill in the C bubble.

It did not work. The offense was a mess, about as bad if not worse than expected. Patricia was let go at the season’s end and is now languishing deep in an assistant position on the Eagles somewhere. Bill went and poached another former protege for the replacement gig, Bill O’Brien. Going into this season, a large number of questions still hung over the Patriots, but O’Brien had experience calling offenses and I think most people, myself included, at least assumed that the Patriots offense would function more than 2022. How much? Maybe not a lot, but anything had to be better than the Patricia mess.

Halfway through 2023 and maybe Matt Patricia was never the problem. At least, not the main problem.

The Patriots offense is pathetic. Down in the muck with the other worst offenses of the league. Unlike the Giants, Bears, Cardinals, Colts, or Jets, they can’t blame it on injuries to their starter. Unlike the Panthers, they can’t blame it on a Rookie surrounded by a lack of talent. The Patriots aren’t loaded by any stretch but they arguably have more than Carolina does and they aren’t starting a toddler at QB. Every team can also claim a shitty o-line. The Patriots are just a total disgrace, and it culminated this week in Germany when Mac Jones threw one of the worst picks you’ll see all year and then got benched for the final drive for Bailey Zappe, who then threw one of the other worst picks you’ll see all year off a fake spike.

So what the fuck happened? The Patriots reached the Wildcard round with Mac two seasons ago (and got nuked by Buffalo, yes, but they made it). Last year was a setback but how did things get this bad? I think the problem is sadly Bill himself. Brady leaving gave Bill a chance to prove who he was without the GOAT and so far that divorce has significantly favored Tommy, who married another supermodel within a year while Bill is left living in a shitty apartment, growing out a goatee, realizing no woman wants him anymore and so he writes screeds about how women are all soul-sucking bitches on Facebook posts everyone mutes.

I mentioned this in a previous comic this year but the Patriots haven’t made any good draft picks in what feels like ages. The Patriot way of shipping off expensive talent, replacing it with mid-level veterans to plug in, and trading down in the draft to select random dudes too high has caught up with them because Tom isn’t there to make everybody look good anymore. The offense makes mistakes now, like a real team. The lack of talent isn’t masked. Billy hasn’t been running the team well at all. He has far too much power to relinquish anything and nobody can tell him no. He’s got his own failson on the staff, nepotism at its finest. The Patriots have finally hit the wall where it might simply be best for everyone to part ways.

There are a lot of rumblings about whether Bill’s job is in jeopardy. That maybe Kraft will finish his afternoon happy ending and let Bill “retire”. I don’t know if I buy into that idea…yet. If the Patriots don’t improve at all (and if they lose to the even more pathetic Giants in two weeks) that might change. Does Bill want to be around for the next attempt at a rebuild? Does Kraft trust him to make smart decisions after pretty much every choice in the past several years has gone poorly? I think we can probably stick the fork in the Mac Jones era. He’ll start for most of the rest of the year but only because the Pats don’t have any better options. Mac sucks. He was average his rookie year and has only slid since. He always seemed like a high floor low-celing kinda guy, but it turns out his floor was actually pretty low.

If he does get pushed out, he’ll pop back up immediately somewhere like Andy Reid did. He’s too close to the all-time wins record to actually hang it up. You can bet your ass he wants that. So where does he potentially go?
Chargers. Brandon Staley is a moldy yogurt you left in the back of the fridge for a month and unless Dean Spanos is truly the dumbest man on earth, Staley is gone by season’s end. The Chargers need defensive help but pretty much have the offensive pieces in place. LA is warm and cozy compared to Boston. Honestly seems like a great bet.
Commies. Belichick grew up in Annapolis while his dad coached at Navy so he’s got roots in the region. The Commies are likely to be in need of a coach after Josh Harris decides to jettison all the Snyder slime to implement his new vision, and he’d be willing to spend. The Commies are in a strange place though. They have some offensive weaponry, but QB is uncertain at this stage. They just sold off two of their better defenders. Probably the other good bet as I can see Harris wanting to start his era off with a splash. It’s probably Billy or they promote Bieniemy, which has been speculation since Bieniemy moved.
Buffalo? A comedy option, but the Bills are in panic mode and just fired Ken Dorsey at OC after this season continues to spiral. That’s usually a foreboding sign that the HC is in trouble. Buffalo has the pieces but just won’t perform up to snuff and needs discipline, which has always been one of Belichick’s strengths. A dark horse candidate, as I don’t see McDermott fired this year unless it gets beyond ugly.
Raiders. I just love the very improbable idea of Mark Davis going “Well a Belichick disciple didn’t work, maybe we just have to go to the source”
Falcons – If you put 5 toilets in your bathroom that would still be less of a waste of space than Arthur Smith. The Falcons don’t have a QB but they do have a lot of wasted skill position talent that Bill has gotten good use of before. Bill would actually use Bijan. I don’t see it happening though, Falcons feel due for a hot young McVay acolyte type.
Panthers – There’s a chance Reich is one and done and he probably should be, but I doubt Billy wants any part of that mess at this stage of his career.
Giants – In the off chance Daboll gets let go (I think he’s safe till next year when his seat will be on fire) Belichick coming back to NY as a Mara legacy hire would not be out of the question in the slightest. In fact, if the Giants job is open and Belichick is available, I can see Mara making a massive push to get him, and a large contingent of old Giants fans would love this idea. I would not, to be clear. I think Bill’s best days are behind him and his career is just going to fade out into a whimper.

To end this on a complete tangent everyone should watch Fall of the House of Usher on Netflix. Mike Flanagan does it again. Not his best, but the man does not miss.