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Report: Mr. Kraft is 'Not Happy with the Offensive Coaching Situation' and Will Demand Changes

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It's not easy to be in charge of things. "Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown," and all that. Not that I would know. I've never been the boss of anyone or anything. I'm not even the Vice President of my own car. But always imagined it would be a tough existence. Like Sonny in A Bronx Tale, having to choose between people loving or fearing you. Whereas I'm more cut from the Michael Scott mold:

And when things aren't going according to plans, when the people under you aren't meeting your standards of excellence, that choice becomes all the harder. 

I mean, I'm sure it's not a problem if you're a unrepentant asshole. If your idea of human resources is that humans are just a resource, thing to be exploited until it's used up like the gas in your tank or whatever, you get as much as you can out of them, discard them, and sleep like a baby. It's when you actually care about them as people but are still results oriented that it's such a challenge. Think the difference between Xerxes, who would gladly kill any of his men for victory, and Leonidas, who would die for any of his.

And so it comes to the head that wears the Patriots crown. Mr. Kraft has long since established himself as the kind of benign ruler who cares about his subjects as individuals. Who takes enormous personal interest in them. The stories are legend. And too numerous to count. 

Yet, here he looks out over the breadth of his domain and cannot like what he sees. Things are not meeting his lofty, demanding standards. And according to Albert Breer, he's voicing his displeasure:

“My understanding is he’s made comments around the building that basically indicate he’s not happy with where the offensive coaching staff is right now. I think that could lead to shuffling at more than just the play-caller spot. We could be talking about a new coordinator coming in with multiple new position coaches. I think there are several guys on the staff who are going to be reviewed after the year."

And to that, I think I speak for every Patriots fan when I say,

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Now, Breer goes on to say that Mr. Kraft has a lot of faith in tight ends coach Nick Caley, whose contract is up and rumored to be interest in a job with Josh McDaniels in Las Vegas. Could be. Who knows? It's not exactly like miracles have been worked at the tight end position since the Pats drafted Devin Asiasi and spent tons of money on Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith. Maybe Caley is a super impressive guy who seems perfectly poised to move up the ladder and take on more responsibility. I'll have to take other people's word for that. But it's neither here nor there.

What matters is that this is how you run an organization. You care for and support the people you depend on, provided you can depend on them. If not, you crack skulls. Rule with an iron fist in a velvet glove. Growing up I used to despise George Steinbrenner. Mostly I despised losing to him. But as I matured, I looked at all his success, compared him to Tom Yawkey, who was always more interested in going fishing with Yaz than building a winner, and his wife, who was always focused on her foundation and not hiring minorities, and came to respect Steinbrenner. The Boss didn't care if anyone liked him. He just wanted success, and would do anything to achieve it. He didn't have time for friends. He would gladly cover his infield with rolling heads if he thought it would get him three more regular season wins. 

And yet with that management approach came chaos, impetuosity, instability, talent leaving, and not nearly the number of trophies you'd expect as he spent decades losing to teams with half his payroll. It was only after he was suspended by MLB and others ran the team for him that the late 90s-2000s happened. 

We don't want that for the Patriots. We want what we've got. Which is one of us. Someone who back in the day knew what it was like to buy a ticket, sit in the stands, live and die with this team. And refuses to let things go back to the way it was then. Personal relationships be damned. His team is currently 17th in points scored, 24th in yards, and dead last in red zone touchdowns. That is unacceptable. And will be corrected.

To be clear, in no way to I think this extends to Bill Belichick. Who was asked about this report on WEEI and said Mr. Kraft is, like everyone else, focused on a one-game season in Buffalo on Sunday. And who Rex Ryan thinks is doing one of the best coaching jobs of his career:

What this is, is holding people accountable. The head coach. The assistants. And most of all, the coordinator. From what I heard years ago from within the organization, Matt Patricia and the Krafts are very close. As in, Matty P would have sit downs with them without Belichick around. Not because he was going over the boss's head necessarily. But because the comfort and trust level was that solid. Think Belichick and Mr. Kraft during the Bill Parcells era. 

But the results of this experiment to put Patricia in charge of the offense speak for itself. It cannot be repeated. Whether that means bringing Bill O'Brien back (my choice), promoting Caley, putting Troy Brown in charge or just put the play calling up to fan voting like American Idol voting, changes must be made. What they are and what things will look like in 2023, the devil is in the details. But for now, it's enough that the man in charge has seen the same things we've been seeing. And is as sick of it as we are. And that alone is yet another reason it was this man, and not someone else, who saved this franchise from moving 28 years ago. 

Giphy Images.
Giphy Images.