Patriots Press Release:
Statement from Greg Schiano:
“I have informed Mr. Kraft and Coach Belichick that I am stepping down from my position at the Patriots. This is not the result of any one event, but rather a realization that I need to spend more time on my faith and family. I don’t want to look back years from now and wish I had done things differently. Therefore, I am taking time away from the game to recalibrate my priorities.”
Statement from Bill Belichick:
“I respect Coach Schiano greatly and appreciate his contributions to our staff and team. He is a friend who we support completely.”
I have no idea how to process this. Other than to say yet another bizarre Patriots offseason just got bizarroer.
For all we know Schiano has some legitimately huge family problem. So for now I’m going to keister my usual skepticism any time someone says they’re leaving a job to spend more time with their loved ones that 90 percent of the time really just means they’re leaving for another job that pays more and will also keep them away from home most of the year. Schiano and Belichick are buds from way back, he totally looks up to Belichick as a mentor and would never leave him in the lurch for light or capricious reasons. So I hope whatever it is it’s not serious, real life stuff.
So going forward, one bright spot for the Pats is that at least this is happening in late March instead of late August or midseason. And the immediate question is: Who takes over?
It would seem to me obvious choice would be Bret Bielema, who I thought would get the job from the beginning, since he’s also a twig off the Belichick coaching tree, he spent all last year with the team, and as far as I know still on staff as a “defensive consultant.”
Seems like a no brainer to slide him into the position of making the calls from behind that Cheesecake Factory menu on gamedays. Plus it gives us the added benefit of more high profile role for Mrs. Bielema. That is, until next year when he gets hired to be the a head coach elsewhere and then Jerod Mayo takes over.
Anyway, farewell to Schiano Man. It was fun while it lasted? I guess?
P.S. I can’t help but wonder if this has anything to do with Michael Bennett, since he dumped all over Schiano after playing for him in Tampa. But there’s no way Belichick would take a brand new player’s side over an old friend. So forget I even mentioned it.