Just days after being hired by the Las Vegas Raiders, former New England Patriots director of player personnel Dave Ziegler and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels have started the hiring process on former co-workers. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, the Raiders are making Patriots assistant coach Bo Hardegree their quarterbacks coach.
Hardegree, 37, was added to the Patriots staff in 2021 as an assistant quarterbacks coach, coming over from the New York Jets after serving as an offensive assistant from 2019-2020. He started his career as a graduate assistant at Duke in 2008, before moving on and working for LSU, the Denver Broncos, Chicago Bears, and Miami Dolphins prior to his arrival in New York. With Josh McDaniels serving as Las Vegas’ head coach, it is expected that Hardegree takes on a full-time role with the Raiders’ quarterbacks. It will also leave Mac Jones without either of his quarterbacks coaches from his rookie season.
Hardegree is the first Patriots hire made by Ziegler and McDaniels, and likely will not be the last, as we’ve seen a number of Bill Belichick’s former assistants take head coaching jobs and hire former co-workers to fill roles on their staffs. Brian Flores hired Chad O’Shea, Jerry Shuplinski, and Josh Boyer off of the Patriots’ staff in 2019, and Joe Judge hired Bret Bielema off of New England’s staff in 2020 after taking head coaching jobs.
Hardegree’s departure opens up another spot on an ever-dwindling offensive staff for the Patriots. McDaniels’ hiring in Vegas opened up the offensive coordinator position for the first time in 10 years, and the expected retirement of running backs coach Ivan Fears would open up that position for the first time in New England since 2002. Bill O’Brien, who many believed to be the top potential replacement for McDaniels, is said to be operating under the assumption that he will be returning as Alabama’s offensive coordinator in 2022.