Possible Greg Schiano Replacements for New England Patriots

Greg Schiano

The New England Patriots are once again looking for a new defensive play caller. After losing Brian Flores to the Miami Dolphins, the Patriots thought they had a natural replacement in Greg Schiano. However, Schiano stepped down last Thursday, saying that he needed to “spend more time on [his] faith and family.” With Schiano departed, the Patriots will need to find somebody to call their defense. There aren’t many options at this point in the season, so they’ll probably have to turn to one of their internal options.

Potential Greg Schiano Replacements for New England Patriots Defense

Bret Bielema

Former Arkansas Razorbacks and Wisconsin Badgers head coach Bret Bielema spent the 2018 season as a defensive consultant with the Patriots. While his job title was vague, he interacted directly with the defense on multiple occasions. Bielema’s a natural choice, as he thought he was getting the job back in February.

Bielema has a career 97-58 record as a collegiate head coach, winning Big Ten Coach of the Year honors back in 2006. However, Bielema hasn’t had much success in recent years. Bielema posted a 29-34 record during his five years at Arkansas. A defensive-minded head coach, Arkansas’ defenses were never that great under Bielema. The Razorbacks had a top-10 defense back in 2014, but all of Bielema’s other defenses ranked in the bottom half of the league in terms of points allowed.

Steve Belichick

Bill Belichick first made a name for himself as a defensive coordinator, so it’s only fair that his son does the same. Belichick first joined the Patriots coaching staff back in 2012 and has slowly climbed through New England’s ranks. The 31-year old has been New England’s safety coach since 2016 and is the longest-tenured defensive coach left on the roster.

Belichick’s will eventually earn the defensive coordinator job, but that probably won’t happen this season. At 31 years old, Belichick still is a little young for the job. Additionally, Belichick has never even called New England’s defense in the preseason, so asking him to do it in the regular season is asking a lot.

Brendan Daly

This one is an incredibly long shot, but it technically could happen. Daly spent the 2018 season with the New England Patriots, serving as the defensive line coach. Daly seemed to be second-in-command on the defense, as he called the defense during New England’s fourth preseason game.

The reason that this is a long shot is that Daly is no longer with the organization. Daly left New England at the end of the 2018 season to serve as Kansas City’s defensive line coach. While it is technically possible that Daly leaves Kansas City for a better position, it’s incredibly unlikely. Daly probably regrets leaving New England right now.


This is the most likely outcome. Quite frankly, the Patriots don’t have a good in-house option to replace Greg Schiano, so it might be best to not fill the role. Bill Belichick is arguably the greatest defensive mind of all time and he’s more than capable of calling a defense.

Doing this would help the defense, but it would mean that Belichick couldn’t spend as much time with the offense. Fortunately, the offense is more than capable of taking care of itself. Josh McDaniels is one of the better offensive minds in the game, and quarterback Tom Brady is the smartest quarterback in the league. Belichick can shift more of his focus to the defensive side of the ball and feel comfortable in the minds running the offense.

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