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Patriots Announce Hiring of Josh McDaniels

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We've followed the Josh McDaniels story all week: from speculation, to rumor, to reported interest, to expected hiring, to reported hiring, and now, to official hiring. Tonight, the Patriots officially announced the re-hiring of coach Josh McDaniels, who will serve as an "Offensive Assistant" for the remainder of the 2011 season:

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. - The New England Patriots announced today that Josh McDaniels has joined the team as an offensive assistant for the remainder of the 2011 season.

McDaniels worked with the New England from 2001 through 2008, including three seasons as offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach from 2006 through the 2008 season.

McDaniels spent the 2009 and 2010 seasons as the Denver Broncos head coach. In 2011, the St. Louis Rams hired him as their head coach.

We've already discussed the impact of this hiring, but there's no doubt about it: this is one heck of a move for the Patriots as they continue their postseason preparation. And here's a story line few saw coming: McDaniels will be helping the Patriots prepare for his former team, the Denver Broncos, for the Patriots' Divisional Playoff match-up this weekend.

After the conclusion of the 2011 season, McDaniels will reportedly step back into the offensive coordinator role for the Patriots.