Saturday, January 7, 2012
Well That Didn't Take Long: Josh McDaniels Is Back With The Patriots For The Playoffs
In a move that is only surprising in terms of its swiftness, former Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels has reportedly returned to the team to be Bill O'Brien's offensive assistant during the playoffs. His first day on the new/old job is tomorrow.
McDaniels was New England's offensive coordinator during the 2006-2008 seasons, his final game was the Super Bowl loss to the Giants. After two mostly terrible years as head coach of the Broncos, he was fired. Most recently, he was St. Louis' offensive coordinator (yes, they had one) last season. He will take over next season as O'Brien goes to Penn State.
"There's no way I can stand up in front of our football team and talk about loyalty and commitment and then leave the Patriots at the start of a playoff run," O'Brien said at his introductory news conference at Penn State. "I have committed to the New England Patriots to see them through this playoff run. There's not going to be a lot of sleep over the next two-to-three weeks. Any break I have, to make sure I have as much time as I can for Penn State."
Any Pats fan should love this move since the offense was never better than when it was in McDaniels' hands. With some time to readjust and learn the new players not to mention plays, I'm sure by next season it will seem like he never left. McDaniels is still only 35 which means, he'll crush it for a few more years in Foxborough and then take another head coaching job somewhere else in the NFL. That's how it goes when you're working with Tom Brady and Bill Belichick.
In that season (2007-08), Tom Brady set a single-season league record with 50 touchdown passes for an offense that averaged a league-best 411.2 yards. It also was first in yards passing, 295.7 and points per game, 36.8.
Now McDaniels will be reunited with Brady and another prolific offense in time for the Patriots practices for their divisional playoff game next Saturday. As the top-seeded team in the AFC, they earned home-field advantage throughout the conference playoffs.
The Patriots were second in the league in overall yards with 428 per game and yards passing with 317.8. Their average of 32.1 points was third.
You can never have enough guys around that Belichick trusts. The fact that he let McDaniels go a few years ago and then return, shows that he still respects what he can do. Most importantly, on a coaching staff full of nobodies and never weres, McDaniels brings a legit resume filled with experience in his young career. You have to believe that in those coaches meetings-like the one we saw in "A Football Life"-McDaniels would be much more likely to speak up and heaven forbid, disagree with Belichick. These are all good things.