The New England Patriots officially announced Bill O’Brien as their new offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach on Thursday. However, it seems that hiring the 53-year-old will not be the only change to the team’s coaching staff this offseason.
According to a recent report by Jeff Howe of The Athletic, O’Brien will “almost certainly” be joined by other additions to the Patriots staff. He is expected to have some input in any potential hirings on the offensive side of the ball.
What those additions will look like has yet to be seen. One prime candidate appears to be Adrian Klemm, though.
A Patriots second-round draft pick in 2000, Klemm is coming off his second season as associate head coach/run game coordinator/offensive line coach at the University of Oregon. While he unsuccessfully interviewed for the Patriots’ offensive coordinator job before it was given to O’Brien, he will meet with the organization a second time. The belief is that he might be a candidate to take over as New England’s O-line coach.
The club also might have to move some other pieces around under O’Brien, who is the only coach on offense whose title for 2023 is already set. Tight ends coach Nick Caley, for example, is working on an expiring contract and might be willing to pursue other opportunities after also not getting the coordinator gig despite an interview.
Additionally, the Patriots will be using several assistants in different roles at the upcoming East-West Shrine Bowl. This may or may not be a sign of things to come with O’Brien now in charge of the offense.
As far as the defense is concerned, no major changes are expected even with Jerod Mayo likely receiving a modified role and title after his as-of-yet unsigned contract extension.
That said, it appears that Arkansas graduate assistant Keith Jones might be in the process of joining the team in some capacity. Jones, who played under current Patriots defensive line coach DeMarcus Covington at UT Martin, already spent some time with the club under the Bill Walsh Minority Coaching Fellowship last summer; his name being on the Shrine Bowl coaching roster suggests that his role is now a bigger one.