The Patriots’ 20-17 loss to the Washington Commanders on Sunday pushed New England to 2-7, its worst start under Bill Belichick since the coach’s first season in 2000.
That season, the Pats started 2-7 and finished 5-11, last in the AFC East. They stare at a similar result if things don’t turn around quickly.
On Monday, Belichick was peppered by local reporters about his job status, asked multiple times if he believes he’s coaching for his job or whether he was given assurances from owner Robert Kraft he wouldn’t be replaced during the season.
In typical Belichick fashion, he parried each comment by saying he’s focused on facing the Indianapolis Colts in Germany on Nov. 12.
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“I’m going to control what I can control and get ready for the Colts,” he said, via Christopher Price of the Boston Globe.
NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported last month that Belichick signed a multiyear contract extension with the Patriots in the offseason and was unlikely to be fired during the campaign. But as the losses have mounted, so have the questions about the coach’s future.
We’ve seen Belichick teams in the past turn things around, but those usually had Tom Brady under center. Things have gone from bad to worse for the Pats in 2023. The offense, expected to take a step forward under coordinator Bill O’Brien, still can’t find consistency under quarterback Mac Jones. And the defense, usually a Belichick staple, has begun to show cracks after being decimated by injury — Sunday, they allowed six plays of 20-plus yards to the Commanders.
Belichick was asked Monday on WEEI Boston if this was the most frustrating season he’s had.
“It’s probably up there, yeah. We just have to keep grinding away here and turn things around this week,” he said, via Mike Reiss of ESPN.
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