Linebacker Kyle Van Noy is happy to be back with the New England Patriots after his one-year stint with the Miami Dolphins ended abruptly.
Without saying as much, it was pretty obvious during Van Noy's Zoom media session Wednesday that he didn't care for how things went down.
Near the beginning of his media session, Van Noy was asked about the biggest difference in his mind between the Brian Flores who was his linebackers coach in New England and the Brian Flores who was his head coach in Miami.
The response: "Yeah, no comment."
Van Noy later was asked about the perception of the Patriots from the outside from his one year in Miami, and turned it around on the Dolphins.
Said Van Noy: “I mean, yeah, I know everything they do down there, and it's gonna be good.”
Van Noy's media session came exactly two weeks after the Dolphins made official his release one year into the four-year, $51 million contract he signed as an unrestricted free agent last offseason.
By all measures, Van Noy's performance on the field was pretty much in line with what he had done in New England the previous three-plus seasons, and Van Noy was one of three captains on defense along with safety Bobby McCain and linebacker Elandon Roberts, another free agent the Dolphins signed away from New England last offseason.
Van Noy battled through some injuries during his one season in Miami and played 14 games with 13 starts, finishing with 69 tackles, six sacks and two forced fumbles. Three of the sacks came in the Week 13 victory against the Cincinnati Bengals and eventually earned Van Noy AFC Defensive Player of the Week honors.
Van Noy kind of alluded to his play in Miami when he was asked about going back to a familiar defensive scheme.
“I feel like I can play in any system and be a very high-level player," he said. "I'm confident in my skills. I've shown it ever since I was put on the field and that just happened to start with the Patriots. Bill (Belichick) does a good job of putting players in places to play their game.
"I feel like I did that last year with the amount of opportunities that I had and the circumstances that I had and I’m just going to continue to do it.”
By all appearances, the decision to release Van Noy was based on his contract versus his contributions, though Miami Herald reporter Adam Beasley wrote that sources indicated that Van Noy's personality rubbed some inside the organization the wrong way.
Regardless of the reason, it no doubt was an eye-opening release.
"I am surprised and disappointed in their decision," Van Noy said in a statement provided to NFL Network reporter Mike Garafolo at the time the news came out March 2. "As a captain, I gave my all to the team. I fought through a painful hip injury during the season, including spending a night in the hospital after a game. I was brought there to be a leader and I know my teammates looked up to and respected me. I am looking forward to making an impact on my next team, on and off the field."
That next team became Van Noy's old team.
But Van Noy also sounded like he had his in-between team when he was asked about the notion of the Patriots looking for payback in 2021 after their first losing season in 20 years.
“I think that would be nice," he said. "I'm not too worried about that because we all have different chips on our shoulder. I have a lot of goals individually and as a team. And I think, it's 0-0 and everybody can say whatever they want. But I think honestly everybody's going to be ready to go.
"As players, we’ve just got to come together as quickly as possible and have one goal in mind, and I think everybody's got that right now. I can just tell you from speaking to some of the players how hungry and excited they are and I’m really excited. I got a big chip on my shoulder too.”
Van Noy later was asked specifically whether he would have a chip on his shoulder when it came time to facing the Dolphins.
“Sure. We’ll see.”