Patriots promote O'Brien to offensive coordinator

Posted Feb. 11, 2011 @ 3:23 p.m.
Posted By PFW staff

The Patriots announced new position responsibilities for the 2011 coaching staff, and Bill O'Brien has been promoted to be the team's offensive coordinator.

O'Brien is entering his fifth season with the Patriots and had been the quarterbacks coach since 2009, a title he will still hold. The Pats had the league's top scoring offense in 2010, and QB Tom Brady won NFL MVP honors.

Matt Patricia will now coach the Patriots' safeties, replacing Corwin Brown, who will not return to the team. Patricia had coached the linebackers since 2006.

Patrick Graham, a defensive assistant last season, will be the linebackers coach, and Brian Flores was named defensive assistant.

The way we see it

There had been rumors that O'Brien would take the role of offensive coordinator after the team went without one in 2010. O'Brien has had a lot of success calling plays the past two seasons and is well-respected by the Patriots' players.

Patricia's linebacking group exceeded expectations last season, and Bill Belichick likely expects him to bring the safeties up to a similar level.

Belichick apparently will still lead the team's defense. It was the Patriots' Achilles' heel at times in 2010, as it dealt with youth and injuries, but Belichick is one of the top defensive minds in the game, so the "D" is not a huge concern.