New England Patriots

INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 31: Head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots looks on in the third quarter against the Los Angeles Chargers at SoFi Stadium on October 31, 2021 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Bill Belichick has accomplished a lot in his decades in the NFL. There aren’t many ‘firsts’ left for the 69-year-old, but his performance in the 2021 offseason has led to him checking another box.

On Thursday afternoon, the Pro Football Writers of America announced the results of their end-of-season awards for coach, assistant coach, and executive of the year. Belichick, who serves as the Patriots’ general manager as well as head coach, was voted as the Executive of the Year for 2021, the first time in his career he’s won the award. The announcement comes 22 years to the day Belichick was named head coach and GM of the Patriots back in 2000.

“Belichick oversaw a rebuild of the Patriots roster after New England was 7-9 in 2020 and missed the playoffs,” the PFWA release reads. “During the offseason, the Patriots added 11 veteran free agents, including wide receiver Nelson Agholor, defensive lineman Davon Godchaux, tight end Hunter Henry, linebacker Matthew Judon and linebacker Kyle Van Noy and also engineered trades for three other players. New England also selected PFWA All-Rookie quarterback Mac Jones in the first round, and PFWA All-Rookie defensive lineman Christian Barmore in the second round of the 2021 NFL Draft.”

Although this is Belichick’s first win, it’s the third for the Patriots franchise. Scott Pioli won the award in 2003 and 2007 working under Belichick as the vice president of player personnel for the Patriots. The award has been given annually since 1993. Belichick has previous won Coach of the Year three times, in 2003, 2007, and 2010.

Former Patriots linebacker Mike Vrabel was voted 2021 Coach of the Year after he led the Tennessee Titans to the top seed in the AFC despite injuries to key players throughout the season. Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn won Assistant Coach of the Year.

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Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at