After being fired by the Detroit Lions during the 2020 NFL season, Matt Patricia landed on his feet quickly by rejoining the New England Patriots. But after getting an unspecified role with the team, it appears that Patricia has found a different niche in the organization.
According to ESPN’s Mike Reiss, Patricia has been working with the team to finalize contracts with free agents. Per the report, Patricia has been active in contract negotiations and has signed his name to several contracts on behalf of the team.
“When Matt Patricia returned to the Patriots this offseason as an assistant to Belichick and his coaching staff, it was natural to wonder what his role would be,” Reiss wrote. “That should continue to evolve, but in recent weeks, he has been helping finalize contracts (his name appears on some of them) with free agents and getting involved in negotiations in certain spots as a salesman of sorts. In that sense, he truly has served as an added layer of support to Belichick.”
That’s a pretty big role for someone who is almost universally known only for his coaching acumen. Patricia spent over a decade as an assistant to Bill Belichick before being named head coach of the Lions in 2018.
Quick-hit thoughts/notes around the Patriots and NFL (Belichick had the cash … and cache; Jimmy G status ties into Patriots' QB draft-based urgency; Matt Patricia settles into new role; Justin Herron; "passing back" plan in play; Justin Rohrwasser etc.) https://t.co/mDNykuGb2u
— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) March 28, 2021
Unfortunately, the success that Matt Patricia had working with defenses in New England just wasn’t there in Detroit.
After an unimpressive 6-10 season in 2018, the Lions went just 3-12-1 in 2019 and the Lions owner put a playoff mandate on Patricia and GM Bob Quinn for 2020. They didn’t make it.
The 2020 Detroit Lions allowed a franchise record and league-worst 519 points. Patricia was fired after a 4-7 start, capping his head coaching run there with a 13-29-1 record.
Bill Belichick welcomed Patricia back with open arms, and it seems their renewed relationship is off to a great start.