New England Patriots

New England Patriots

New England Patriots

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - SEPTEMBER 17: New England Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O'Brien looks on during the game against the Miami Dolphins at Gillette Stadium on September 17, 2023 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS – SEPTEMBER 17: New England Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien looks on during the game against the Miami Dolphins at Gillette Stadium on September 17, 2023 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

During his introductory press conference on Wednesday, new New England Patriots head coach Jerod Mayo told reporters that “everything’s under evaluation” when asked about naming coordinators for the upcoming season. Interviews with defensive coordinator and special teams coordinator candidates seemed to signal replacements in those spots, but until Thursday evening there was no news on the offensive coordinator position, which Bill O’Brien held since being hired at this time last year.

On Thursday night, we learned O’Brien would be one-and-done in that position. As first reported by ESPN college football insider Pete Thamel, O’Brien is leaving the Patriots to take the offensive coordinator job at Ohio State.


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Last week, it was reported that O’Brien was still under contract with the Patriots for next year. So this move represents him leaving the organization, rather than simply needing a new job.

O’Brien, 54, was hired by the Patriots last year to fix an offense that has stalled under de facto offensive coordinator Matt Patricia the year before. However O’Brien was unable to elevate the group. The Patriots finished tied for dead-last in the NFL with 13.9 points per game, 30th in total yards, and 30th in team passer rating in 2023.

  • Ian Rapoport on Twitter: "The Insiders on @NFLGameDay: What's next for Jim Harbaugh, could Josh McDaniels be back in NE with new #Patriots coach Jerod Mayo, and Bill Belichick's options could include a playoff team. pic.twitter.com/GUzZvOzlsV / Twitter"

    The Insiders on @NFLGameDay: What's next for Jim Harbaugh, could Josh McDaniels be back in NE with new #Patriots coach Jerod Mayo, and Bill Belichick's options could include a playoff team. pic.twitter.com/GUzZvOzlsV

    Ironically, it seems O’Brien will now be given a similar task in Columbus under embattled head coach Ryan Day, who faced calls for his job at the start of the offseason. According to Thamel, O’Brien’s hiring “comes with a potential shift within the OSU program, as coach Ryan Day has spent part of this off-season exploring bringing in an experienced coordinator that would allow him to give up play calling duties.”

    As for the Patriots, they now begin (or resume, assuming they knew this was happening ahead of time) a full search for a new offensive coordinator. This will be their third time replacing an offensive coordinator in three years, after Josh McDaniels held the job from 2012 until being named head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders before the 2022 season.

    Along with that report on O’Brien’s contract last week, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport shared that Mayo would be interested in former Patriots offensive coordinator McDaniels to return to the role. Other top offensive coordinator candidates this coaching cycle include Rams pass game coordinator/quarterbacks coach Zac Robinson, Seahawks offensive coordinator Shane Waldron, Ravens quarterbacks coach Tee Martin, and Bengals quarterbacks coach Dan Pitcher. We have a full list of potential candidates here.

  • Alex Barth is a writer and 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. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at [email protected].

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