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McCarthy: Josh McDaniels’ Act Grows Old in NFL Circles

By Matt McCarthy, 985TheSportsHub.com

The NFL is a small industry, and Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels is finding out just how small it is.

McDaniels’ annual flirtation with head coaching jobs around the NFL has once again come to an end, but this time it wasn’t on his terms. The league finally said no thanks before McDaniels could say no thanks to them.

The man who has interviewed for more jobs than anyone can count in recent years only got one interview this time around. The NFL has caught onto his act and teams don’t want any part of it anymore.

He reportedly told the Bengals he didn’t want to interview with them this offseason. He left the Colts at the altar last year. He was said to be a front-runner for the 49ers job two years ago before removing his name from consideration deep into the hiring process, and he did the same to the Browns two years before that.

He’s a tease, and the NFL is tired of being teased.

McDaniels only seemed to draw interest from the Green Bay Packers during this hiring cycle, and they said thanks but no thanks. Nobody else came calling.

Instead, the Pack went with first-year Titans offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur, who was hired in Tennessee to turn around an offense that finished 19th in the NFL in points and 23rd in the league in yards in 2017.

Despite adding Dion Lewis and seeing significant growth from running back Derrick Henry and wide receiver Corey Davis, the Titans actually got worse under LaFleur. They finished 25th in the NFL in yards and 27th in the league in points this year.

Yet the Packers still wanted him over McDaniels. What does that tell you?

Nobody wants to touch the guy. His name is dirt around the league.

Nov 11, 2018; Nashville, TN: New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels before the game against the Tennessee Titans at Nissan Stadium. (Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports)
Nov 11, 2018; Nashville, TN: New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels before the game against the Tennessee Titans at Nissan Stadium. (Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports)

The man who once was arguably the hottest head coaching candidate in the NFL appeared forced to beg for interest from the Browns through his hometown newspaper last week. Some outlet called The Canton Repository reported that McDaniels, a Canton-area native, was “enthusiastically interested” in the Cleveland job.

But it doesn’t sound like the Browns were interested in you, Josh.

Ouch.

The game’s up. You can flirt all night, but last call eventually arrives, the lights come on, and you’re headed home alone.

Make no mistake about it: this represents good news for the Patriots. Stability is crucial for success in the NFL, and the Tom Brady-McDaniels relationship is the epitome of success. Keeping McDaniels in Foxboro can only be good news moving forward.

And maybe this is further proof that he truly is the heir apparent to Bill Belichick. McDaniels is no fool. He must know that publicly embarrassing the Colts last year will likely prevent him from securing any head coaching jobs around the league moving forward. What does that matter if he's in line for the job in Foxboro?

But even if he is next in line to coach the Patriots, that didn't stop him from trying to flirt with other teams this offseason. This time, the rest of the league wasn't having it.

Everyone else is done with the act.

You can hear Matt McCarthy on various 98.5 The Sports Hub programs. Follow him on Twitter @MattMcCarthy985.