New England Patriots

Matt Patricia remains one of the hottest head coaching candidates in the NFL. And a new report says he could land the league’s most coveted opening.

Pat Leonard of the New York Daily News reported on Wednesday that “all signs point” to Patricia becoming the next Giants head coach. Pro Football Talk previously reported that the Patriots are “bracing” for Patricia’s departure, but that his likely landing spot was in Detroit. The story noted “indications” that Patricia actually prefers the Giants to the Lions.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweeted back on New Year’s Day that the Giants “could be Patricia’s landing spot.” So it appears that in his case, where there’s smoke there’s fire.

(L-R) Bill Belichick, Matt Patricia (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

(L-R) Bill Belichick, Matt Patricia (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Patricia And The Giants: Perfect Fit?

Leonard’s report describes Patricia as a potential “kindred spirit” with newly hired Giants GM Dave Gettleman. Both are defensive-minded and would likely focus on trying to return the Giants to their previous defensive glory under Bill Parcells (and, um, Bill Belichick).

Improving the offense and finding their next starting quarterback are obviously huge priorities for the team. But Patricia as head coach appears to be a “perfect fit in the organization’s preferred identity.”

Although Patricia would inherit a Giants (3-13) defense that allowed the eighth-highest opposing passer rating (94.2) in the NFL, the team isn’t short on defensive talent. Jason Pierre-Paul, Olivier Vernon, and Damon Harrison lead a stout defensive line. Cornerback Janoris Jenkins (second team All-Pro in 2016) mans the defensive backfield.

RELATED: Schefter Shoots Down Reports Of Belichick Joining Giants

However, there’s also safety Landon Collins. Despite his huge talent (First Team All-Pro in 2016), he doesn’t sound interested in a head coach with Bill Belichick or Nick Saban’s “strict” style. It’s unlikely that Patricia would be much different. So Collins may have to change his attitude if he wants to get along with the bearded one.

Patricia would almost certainly turn around the most important aspect of the defense: points. The Giants allowed the fifth-most points per game (24.3) in the NFL last season.

Defensive coordinator Matt Patricia of the New England Patriots looks on in the AFC Championship game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on January 24, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Defensive coordinator Matt Patricia of the New England Patriots looks on in the AFC Championship game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on January 24, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

What’s Next?

Due to NFL tampering rules, the Giants couldn’t make any kind of announcement until after the Patriots’ season is over. But as you’ve seen in the recent past with Dan Quinn and Kyle Shanahan, news of Patricia’s impending hire wouldn’t exactly be a state secret.

If the Patriots make it to Super Bowl LII, the Giants would have a chance to conduct a second interview with Patricia if they see fit. That would have to happen no later than Sunday, Jan. 28, exactly a week before the Big Game.

RELATED: Matt Patricia Focused On ‘Task At Hand’ Amid Interviews

Patricia has earned a reputation in his time as Patriots defensive coordinator as someone whose presence resonates with players. Several Patriots spoke with NBC Sports Boston’s Mike Giardi about how Patricia’s “personal touch” could make him a great head coach.

At the end of the day, that may be more important than any kind of X’s and O’s. But until Patricia proves unfit for the job, you should at least give him a sliver of a chance that he can reverse the “curse” of Belichick’s relatively underwhelming coaching tree.

— By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at matthew.dolloff@bbgi.com.