When Matt Patricia left the New England Patriots to become the next head coach of the Detroit Lions, he left a void at the team's defensive coordinator position. So far, the Patriots have not yet named a successor for their coordinator of the past six years but linebackers coach Brian Flores has emerged as the front-runner. However, it looks as is if he will have to wait for the promotion.
According to Yahoo Sports's Charles Robinson, New England has opted to go without an official defensive coordinator next year:
#Patriots will go without a defensive coordinator next season. But linebackers coach Brian Flores will handle defensive playcalling responsibilities, mirroring Matt Patricia grooming in 2010.
As Robinson notes, Patricia was brought up the same way the team now apparently plans to use with Flores: Before getting the title of defensive coordinator in 2012 he served as signal caller as well as safeties coach. Flores will reportedly do the same this upcoming season – possible with a significant bump in salary – before likely being named as the unit's coordinator next year.
Flores joined the Patriots in 2004 and worked his way up the ranks since then. In 2016, he was promoted to his current role; last season he even draw head coaching attention as the Arizona Cardinals brought him in for an interview. The 37-year old did not get the job and his career will now continue in New England for the foreseeable future – beginning in 2018, possibly as defensive coordinator.