The defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots made news earlier this week and on Thursday, there was another sudden change in Foxborough.
It has been another offseason of change for the NFL’s reigning dynasty. Earlier this week, the New England Patriots watched tight end Rob Gronkowski step away from the game after nine seasons in the league. Earlier this year, free agency claimed defensive end Trey Flowers (Detroit Lions), defensive tackle Malcom Brown (New Orleans Saints), wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson (Chicago Bears) and left tackle Trent Brown (Oakland Raiders).
Of course, there was also the departure of linebackers coach Brian Flores, a big part factor when it came to the team’s defense. While he never held the title of defensive coordinator, his contributions were significant. And now he’s the head coach of the Miami Dolphins.
In his place was to be Greg Schiano, who has done his tour of duty in both college and professional football. But to be was obviously not to be. And on Thursday afternoon, both Schiano and Patriots’ head coach Bill Belichick issued the following statements.
“I have informed Mr. Kraft and Coach Belichick that I am stepping down from my position at the Patriots. This is not the result of any one event, but rather a realization that I need to spend more time on my faith and family. I don’t want to look back years from now and wish I had done things differently. Therefore, I am taking time away from the game to recalibrate my priorities.”
“I respect Coach Schiano greatly and appreciate his contributions to our staff and team. He is a friend who we support completely.”
There’s certainly a lot more to come in regards to this development. Will the Patriots hire someone else to assist the defense or will Belichick take the reins entirely. It’s never boring in Foxborough for any numbers of reasons. But no doubt this has to be regarded as a significant surprise.