The New England Patriots just wrapped up their preseason with a 23-6 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders, and all is not well in Boston. After watching last year’s offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels take the head coaching job for the Raiders, the Patriots offense has been floundering all offseason, and all eyes are on McDaniels’ replacement(s): former Lions head coach Matt Patricia and former Giants head coach Joe Judge.
The Patriots never named a true offensive coordinator replacement for McDaniels, but both Patricia (officially offensive line coach/senior football advisor) and Judge (offensive assistant/quarterbacks) have taken on most of his responsibilities, with some reporters in New England speculating that Patricia is the true man behind the offense right now.
It’s only the preseason, but the results have been a disaster thus far. Reports out of camp have been that the Patriots' offense has looked awful, confused, and lost. Here’s a taste from this week’s joint practices with the Raiders:
It got worse.— Greg A. Bedard (@GregABedard) August 23, 2022
Worst offensive practice of camp. Jones picked off to end awful 2 minute. He was pissed and paced sidelines after.
Run defense only positive today. Pass defense carved up by Carr, Adams and Renfrow. No Waller.
That has carried over into the preseason, as second-year quarterback Mac Jones has had seven offensive drives over two games, and four of them have been three-and-outs. His stat line is just as bad, completing 13-of-21 passes for just 132 yards (6.3 Y/A), zero touchdowns, one interception, and three sacks. On Friday night, Jones was visibly frustrated after the Patriots’ first-team offense went three-and-out, interception, three-and-out, field goal—against Raiders backups.
While there are plenty of reasons for the Patriots’ struggles—it’s a new offensive system for a young quarterback, the offensive line is not playing well right now (although Patricia is the offensive line coach), they don’t have top-tier talent at skill positions—Patricia is the one catching a lot of ire from Patriots fans right now. Here’s just a sampling from Twitter:
Matt Patricia being OL coach and play caller is insanity, who's coaching the OL blowing all these assignments while he's calling the plays?— Chess Not Checkahs (@ChessNotChekahs) August 27, 2022
(warning: NSFW language in video)
It must be said, we need an OC. Matt Patricia is not the man for the job. We clearly see that there is no synchronization or cohesion within the offensive team. https://t.co/kE0OC9eAcl— Karl FE (@vino250) August 27, 2022
Matt Patricia as OC also makes me sick. Couldn’t have much more of a drop off for Mac in year 2, after having Josh first year.— Kyle Kelpin (@Kyle_withaK) August 27, 2022
Patricia’s bread and butter was D, and he wasn’t even good at that. Cant have a bend but don’t break O
Matt Patricia is horrible.— ShadySheik (@ShadySheikness) August 27, 2022
None of these Mac Jones seasons will count. As long as Matt Patricia is calling plays. https://t.co/qZioSF47c7— Cityboy ☘️ (@Cityboy2k20) August 27, 2022
Matt Patricia is my least favorite NFL coach of all time— Brett (@brettjw13) August 27, 2022
Only Matt Patricia and Joe Judge can destroy a completely functional offense in just 8 weeks— Michael O (@themichaeloshow) August 27, 2022
@DetroitOnLion can you guys please please take Matt Patricia back?— Jimmy Bighouse (@jimmybighouse) August 27, 2022
Obviously, it’s only the preseason and this is the time to work out the kinks of any football team. But the Patriots offense is undoubtedly going through it right now, and it seems unlikely to magically fix itself by Week 1... and hopefully not by Week 5.