ByPat Pickens

Jan 16, 2024

Patriots Next Head Coach Odds: Who Will Replace Bill Belichick In New England?

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After 24 years, the New England Patriots head coaching vacancy is finally open.

The Patriots reportedly parted ways with legendary head coach Bill Belichick on Thursday after a marriage that produced nine AFC championships and six Super Bowl wins.

Belichick and the Pats have not reached the playoffs since 2021, and New England had the worst offense in football in 2023. Whoever takes over will likely need to draft and develop a new quarterback while finding offensive weapons to turn the offense around.

Here’s a look at some of the candidates the Patriots and owner Robert Kraft may consider for this Herculean task.

NOTE: These odds were created for entertainment purposes and are not available on sports betting apps.

New England Patriots 2024 Coaching Odds

  • Jerod Mayo (+225)
  • Mike Vrabel (+300)
  • Brian Flores (+700)
  • Josh McDaniels (+800)
  • The Field (+1000)
  • Bill O’Brien (+1200)
  • Kirby Smart (+2500)

2024 New England Patriots Coach Favorites

Jerod Mayo (+225)

Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Mayo has never been an NFL head coach, but if you read the reporting tea leaves, he’s the frontrunner to succeed his mentor.

Mayo won the Super Bowl as a linebacker for the Patriots in 2014 and has been a member of the coaching staff since 2019, mainly coaching defense.

Mayo was reportedly given a raise, which kept him from discussing head-coaching vacancies during the 2022 offseason, and is highly regarded by Kraft and others in Foxborough.

New England requires a special talent to replace Belichick, and Mayo looks like the frontrunner.

Mike Vrabel (+300)

Vrabel is without a doubt the most likely external candidate based on his experience, track record, and experience coaching the Tennessee Titans.

Vrabel won three Super Bowls as a Patriots linebacker, then collected a 56-48 record with three playoff appearances as Titans coach before his early-Janaury firing.

Vrabel would face immense pressure to quickly right the ship in New England, but he would fit right in in Foxborough.

Brian Flores (+700)

Another defense-first candidate, Flores cut his teeth under Belichick as a scout and assistant coach and won four Super Bowls as a member of the New England organization.

Flores has head-coaching experience with the Miami Dolphins, though his struggles in helping Tua Tagovailoa develop were widely publicized. Still, Flores went 24-25 in Miami and returns to being a hot head-coaching candidate while leading the Minnesota Vikings defense this past season.

2024 New England Coaching Sleepers

Josh McDaniels (+800)

McDaniels has flamed out in multiple head-coaching roles, and you can bet the heat on him would be substantial while replacing Belichick.

But the offensive-minded McDaniels could and has thrived in New England, where he helped guide one of the most prolific offenses in NFL history during many of its prime seasons.

Despite his flaws, McDaniels has the most NFL head-coaching experience of any candidate on this list, which could help take the heat off Mayo if the latter ascends to defensive coordinator.

The Field (+1000)

The Patriots have won six Super Bowls and played in 11 in their history. With stable ownership, one of the NFL’s best fan bases, and a newly upgraded stadium, the Patriots job could cast as wide a net as possible.

The Pats could target an outside candidate if one becomes available after Wild Card weekend. (Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Todd Bowles or Dallas Cowboys HC Mike McCarthy come to mind.)

New England also could join the poaching search for hot college candidates like Oregon’s Dan Lanning – or even College Football Playoff-winning Jim Harbaugh if he leaves Michigan.

Kirby Smart (+2500)

Smart seems content at Georgia, with two national titles and arguably the best college program in the country. He may be a college-coaching legend, but he’s only 48 years old and has both coached and played in the NFL.

Maybe Smart, who coached under Belichick’s mentor Nick Saban at LSU, the Dolphins, and Alabama, wants to dip his toe into consideration for an NFL role.

Smart leaving would send shockwaves throughout football, but Saban, Pete Carroll, and even Harbaugh jumped from championship-caliber college gigs to the NFL.

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Author

Pat Pickens

Pat Pickens is a seasoned sportswriter who has covered pro sports since 2013 for various websites, including The New York Times, NHL.com, Bleacher Report, Sportsnet.ca, USA Today, the Associated Press and many others. His debut book, titled "The Whalers" about the history of the NHL's Hartford Whalers, was released in October 2021.

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