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Report: Vikings’ Brian Flores a possible Bill Belichick successor

Flores is a member of the Belichick coaching tree
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If the New England Patriots move on from legendary head coach Bill Belichick after the season, Brian Flores could be a candidate to lead the next era of Patriots football. 

Below is from an story published Saturday by insiders Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero.

If Belichick does move on, speculation has centered on Mayo as his successor. That's not a guarantee, though, and other options -- particular coaches with Patriots ties, such as Josh McDaniels or Vikings defensive coordinator Brian Flores -- shouldn't be ruled out.

Flores is part of the Belichick coaching tree. He coached in New England under Belichick from 2008 to 2018 before the Dolphins hired him as head coach. He went 24-25 in three seasons with Miami and then spent 2022 as an assistant under Mike Tomlin in Pittsburgh before taking over as the defensive coordinator in Minnesota this season. 

Flores’s blitz-happy scheme has helped the Vikings go from 30th in scoring defense last season to 10th this season — an improvement so respected that Lions head coach Dan Campbell recently said the 2023 Vikings, who are 7-8, are a better overall team than the 2022 squad that won 13 games. 

Flores will undoubtedly continue to hear his name in rumor mills with every team that finds itself looking for a new head coach, but the Patriots also have current defensive coordinator Jerod Mayo ready to lead a team if an opportunity arises.

“Flores should get another shot at being a head coach someday, but if the Patriots want a defensive-minded person to replace Belichick, then Mayo should be the obvious choice,” writes Nick Goss of NBC Sports Boston. “He's already here, he knows the team, he's talented and he's highly respected.”

Brian Flores

Brian Flores