As the 2022 calendar prepares to reveal the month of February, the New England Patriots’ ‘powers that be’ continue to be coveted by teams with coaching and front-office vacancies throughout the NFL. While some Pats’ coaches and executives have been interviewed, others continue to await word on their status.
To be fair, keeping track of the latest movement when it comes to New England’s involvement in the NFL coaching carousel can be difficult.
From a couple of highly-acclaimed coaches to a promising pair of front office decision-makers, here is the latest from New England’s job search candidates, courtesy of the Patriot Maven Notebook
Despite having yet to receive a formal request for an interview, there was reportedly ‘strong buzz’ on Tuesday morning surrounding McDaniels’ as the front runner for the Las Vegas Raiders’ coaching vacancy. The ‘deal’ would also have included the Raiders’ bringing current Patriots’ Director of Player Personnel Dave Ziegler as their new general manager, per the report from The Athletic’s Vic Tafur.
However, just one day later, the rumors of a Ziegler/McDaniels tandem heading to Las Vegas have significantly cooled, according to Tafur’s report.
“McDaniels apparently had been calling coaches around the league about putting together a staff,” Tafur wrote on Wednesday. “But it appears something happened in the last 24 hours. League sources don’t know if the issue was about compensation or the power structure in Las Vegas or both, but it seems Ziegler and McDaniels are not the leaders in the clubhouse anymore.”
Ziegler met with Raiders owner Mark Davis on Friday to discuss their open General Manager position. It is believed that, if chosen, he would look to secure the McDaniels’ services as head coach, given the pair’s long history together.
McDaniels has yet to be publically linked to any job opening besides Las Vegas. Should the ‘silver and black’ head in a different direction, it might mean that his remaining in New England would be a mere formality. Despite his close connection to Nick Caserio, McDaniels is highly unlikely to become a candidate for the Houston Texans head coaching job.
Ziegler, who took over for Caserio as the Patriots’ Director of Player Personnel this season, does have one interview under his belt this offseason — the aforementioned meeting with Las Vegas on Friday. He is no stranger to the interview process, having spoken with the Denver Broncos last offseason regarding their opening at GM. Ultimately, Ziegler removed his name from consideration to accept a promotion with the Patriots. Ziegler helped to build a much-improved Patriots’ roster for the 2021 season, playing an integral role in the Pats’ stellar performance in the 2021 NFL Draft. If both he an McDaniels are removed from consideration for the Raiders’ openings, Ziegler is likely to remain in New England, as well.
Mayo was considered a hot commodity in teams’ pursuing candidates to fill the various openings throughout the league. Mayo interviewed with the Denver Broncos a few days ago, yet is reportedly no longer in consideration for the job. He interviewed with the Las Vegas Raiders on Tuesday for their coaching vacancy.
The former Patriots linebacker, and current Inside Linebackers Coach, was reportedly considered a favorite for the Texans job. However, the buzz surrounding his connection to Houston has waned. Mayo’s name should continue to be linked to openings across the league.
Wolf has served as a Patriots’ scouting consultant for the last few seasons, playing a major role in formulating the Patriots’ 2021 draft strategy. He interviewed with the Chicago Bears and Minnesota Vikings for their respective vacant general manager positions. Despite being in serious contention for both openings, both the Bears and Vikings appear to be headed in different directions. As a result, Wolf seems likely to remain in New England.