The Patriots' New-Look Offense Has Been a Disaster in Training Camp
Bill Belichick fundamentally changed the New England Patriots offense this offseason with a radical new plan. And the results so far in training camp have been nothing short of disastrous.
With long-time offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels now the head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders, Belichick needed to find someone to run the offense. His solution? No one. The Patriots don't have an offensive coordinator. What they do have is offensive line coach Matt Patricia sort of overseeing things (according to some reports). Yes, the same Matt Patricia who has been coaching on the defensive side of the ball since 2006. Sure, that makes all kinds of sense.
Belichick also wanted to change things up, so the Patriots scrapped their traditional, gap power run blocking system and are replacing it with a zone-blocking scheme. Here's where I remind you that the Patriots' power run game had been incredibly successful under Belichick and the change has a lot of people puzzled.
So how is this new look offense looking in training camp? Terrible.
Reports out of camp have mostly looked like this:
I mean, it's bad.
Reports about quarterback Mac Jones struggling mightily should set off alarm bells, given how well he handled his rookie camp last year. More than anything though, the offensive line seems to be getting beaten to a pulp. The red flag here is that three starters are back from what was one of the NFL's better lines in 2021 -- center David Andrews and tackles Isaiah Wynn and Trent Brown. There shouldn't be that big a drop off with two new guards entering the mix.
Could scheme and a lack of vision from the top be the big problem here? Yeah, it would seem so. Maybe doing the "we don't have an offensive coordinator" thing was a mistake.
Now, look, it's very early in training camp, the Patriots could get this working and find success offensively this season. But to be so wildly out of sync is absolutely alarming. Especially when there is no coordinator at the top to look to for answers. It's definitely a situation worth monitoring over the next few weeks.