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Legendary Coach Trade Talks Heat Up, NFL Insider Lists Four Destinations

The New England Patriots could trade Bill Belichick after the season, and one NFL insider believes these four teams could be interested
Bill Belichick Trade

Current New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick has been the focus of several trade rumors over the past handful of months. Following Tom Brady’s departure in 2019, everybody knew that the Patriots would need a season or two to rebuild and add some new, young talent. However, after hand-selecting quarterback Mac Jones to be the new face of the franchise and giving away a record-setting amount of guaranteed money, the Patriots entered 2023 still looking for their first playoff win of the post-Brady Era. Owner Robert Kraft made it clear in the offseason that making the playoffs was a priority for the upcoming season, and it’s safe to say that’s not going to happen.

At 2-8, the Patriots are in the midst of their worst season since the Hugh Millen days. New England is on a collision course with a top-10 pick, and this could spell the end of Belichick’s legendary tenure with the Patriots. Even though it didn’t end on the highest of notes, what Bill Belichick did during his two-decade tenure with the Patriots is nothing short of remarkable, and several teams should be willing to trade for him to try and recapture that magic. During a recent appearance on “Pardon My Take”, NFL insider Mike Florio gave four teams that could potentially go after the eight-time Super Bowl champion.

“Whether it’s the Commanders, whether it’s the Buccaneers, whether it’s the Panthers, whether it’s the Chargers, anyone out there that wants him knows you’ve got to work with us, you’ve got to deal with us, you’ve got to give us something we like before you get him,” Florio said.

Florio’s language suggests that these four teams are not the only ones that will be interested in a potential Bill Belichick trade, but they are probably the four frontrunners. With that in mind, let’s take a look at each landing spot and see if a trade makes sense.

NFL Insider Lists 4 Teams As Potential Bill Belichick Trade Destinations

Washington Commanders

It makes sense that the Washington Commanders would look to part ways with Ron Rivera. The former Panthers head coach can keep a team afloat, but it’s clear that he’s not good enough to produce a consistent winner. This team has only made one playoff appearance during his four seasons with the team, and that came when the NFC East was arguably the worst division of the past decade. There is no pre-established connection between Rivera and Washington’s new ownership group, which only makes a firing all the more likely. With this in mind, Washington’s new ownership may decide to pull the trigger on a Bill Belichick trade to show the fanbase just how devoted they are to winning.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

This is an intriguing choice. Todd Bowles is in the midst of yet another underwhelming season, and he probably won’t be back for Year 3. The last time the Buccaneers brought in a key part of the Patriots dynasty, it resulted in an immediate Super Bowl win. However, history probably won’t repeat itself this time. While there are some solid pieces on defense, the questionable quarterback situation makes this a murky fit. Baker Mayfield has played well this year, but will Belichick want to bring him back for another season? If not, will he really want to spend the final years of his coaching career developing yet another young quarterback? And even if he does want to do that, is he the right man for that type of job?

Carolina Panthers

This one doesn’t make as much sense. Frank Reich may be on his way out the door, but Belichick shouldn’t be the guy to replace him. The Carolina Panthers wasted all of their draft capital moving up to select Bryce Young, so why would they trade what little they have for Bill Belichick? At the end of the day, this team needs more talent, and the past five years have proven that Belichick isn’t able to consistently produce a winner with subpar talent. Additionally, Young has struggled in Year 1 and the Panthers should probably consider hiring a younger, offensive-minded coach if they want to turn him into a franchise quarterback. Belichick hasn’t exactly brought out the best in Mac Jones, and his struggles at evaluating wide receivers could be a long-term hindrance to Young’s future in this league.

Los Angeles Chargers

The Los Angeles Chargers wasted a year of everyone’s life by bringing Brandon Staley back for the 2023 season. His defense is still atrocious, his in-game decisions are still questionable at best, and his refusal to take responsibility for wasting the rookie contract of an elite quarterback is getting old. Even if you think Bill Belichick has lost a step on the offensive side of the ball, nobody can question his defensive mind. In 2022, New England had a top-five defense by just about every metric, and the 2023 unit is still solid despite several injuries to key players. The offense will remain one of the best in the league as long as Justin Herbert is under center, so all Belichick would need to do is fix the defense to make this team a perennial playoff contender. If any team is going to trade for Bill Belichick, the Chargers probably make the most sense.

Main Photo: Nathan Ray Seebeck – USA Today Sports


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