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Patriots allow Josh McDaniels and Joe Judge to interview for head coaching positions, so what comes next?

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Related: Giants request interview with Patriots special teams/wide receivers coach Joe Judge

NFL: NOV 24 Cowboys at Patriots Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

While the New England Patriots are among 12 teams left standing after the regular season, 20 others are already on to the new year — among them the New York Giants, Carolina Panthers and Cleveland Browns. The three clubs all fired their head coaches after (or in Carolina’s case, during) disappointing 2019 campaigns and now have openings atop their staffs. In order to fill them, they have set their sights on the reigning world champions.

While the Browns and Panthers both asked the Patriots to interview long-time offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, the Giants want to speak not just to McDaniels but have also expressed interest in wide receivers/special teams coach Joe Judge. It seems as if all three teams have been granted their wish: as first reported by the Boston Globe’s Jim McBride, New England has given them permission to talk to the two assistant coaches.

So, what comes next? NFL rules prohibit the teams to talk to coaches whose teams play on wild card weekend, which means that the Giants, Browns and Panthers will have to wait until next week to conduct interviews whether the Patriots advance past the Tennessee Titans on Saturday or not. However, those talks can only take place in New England in case the Patriots will have to prepare for an upcoming divisional round game.

As for this week, the interest in McDaniels and Judge should not be much of an issue as the former pointed out during a media conference call earlier this week: “I’m 100 percent fully invested in getting ready for Tennessee and trying to put our best performance of the season out there on Saturday night. We have a lot of work to do and that’s really where my focus will be, that’s where it’s at now and it will stay there.”

“That’s the best thing for our team; that’s the best thing for me. We’re one of 12 teams that have an opportunity to compete in the postseason and that’s the only way I’ll ever do it,” McDaniels added. There is a chance, however, that next week does look different and both he and Judge will have to prepare for a game against the Kansas City Chiefs and potential head coaching interviews.