The writing was already on the wall when one after another the NFL’s nine head coaching vacancies filled up. On Wednesday, however, New England Patriots inside linebackers coach Jerod Mayo put an end to the speculation about his future: he will stay with the team in 2022 despite interest from other clubs.
Appearing on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Zolak & Bertrand show, Mayo spoke about the opportunities he received this offseason and his future as a coach. As far as the upcoming season is concerned, however, he is quite happy with his current situation.
“Whatever it is, I enjoy developing people and getting them to a place that they can’t achieve for themselves,” Mayo said. “Right now, I’m having a blast doing it. I’m having a blast with the group that we have, and, hopefully, we can put a good product on the field next year.”
Despite coming off only his third year as an assistant coach, Mayo was invited to two head coaching interviews this offseason. He spoke with both the Denver Broncos and the Las Vegas Raiders, but was not hired for either job.
Him leaving to become a defensive coordinator also appeared to be a possibility, especially with offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels departing the Patriots to become head coach in Las Vegas. Mayo was indeed approached by other clubs, but decided to stay put.
“If you look at it from my perspective as well, I am a New England guy. My family’s here, everything’s here,” he said. “So, for me to pick up my family — and remember, I was a 2008 first-round draft pick — and to go to some team where I really don’t know the people over there, we’re moving all these people, to me that’s hard. It has to be a great, great opportunity, not just any team.”
While becoming a coordinator would be the next logical career step for the current position coach, Mayo admitted that he has set his sights on another occupation: he wants to become a head coach one day, whether in New England or some place else.
“When people ask me, ‘Is your goal to be a defensive coordinator?’ That’s not my goal. My goal’s not be a defensive coordinator. My goal’s to be a head coach,” he said.
“My goal’s to work across the team, when we’re talking about offense, defense and special teams. Because that’s what I enjoy — I don’t just enjoy defense. I love it, but I don’t just enjoy defense. I enjoy the game of football. I enjoy learning from different people, and I also enjoy the personnel site. Bill [Belichick], over the last couple of years, has given us more time to spend with the scouts which has been beneficial for me.”
For the moment, however, Mayo will have to wait for his opportunity. For the Patriots as a whole, this is good news: they will not lose one of the most valuable members of their coaching staff just yet.