It’s without a doubt that New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick will go down in history as one of the greatest NFL coaches of all time. But what is questioned, and has been greatly discussed by analysts throughout the year, is whether or not he will remain with the Patriots franchise past the 2020 playoff run, choose to coach another team next year, or retire altogether.
Belichick, 67, has never been a man of many words in a press conference, and he’s even more tight-lipped when it comes to discussing his contract. In fact, his contract has been kept so under wraps, even Patriots team owner Robert Kraft only has a vague idea of when Belichick, who’s been head coach since 2000 will move on from New England.
In 2017, Kraft was asked by Washington Post reporter Mark Maske of when people could expect the “Belichick End of Days,” and his response was that it would be no time soon.
“We have a pact that we don’t talk about that,” Kraft replied. “He knows and I know. But he won’t be done this year.” As for an exact end date, “If I knew a date, I would tell you that I knew. I wouldn’t tell you when it is, but I would tell you there is a date.”
Kraft’s cryptic response leaves a lot to interpretation, but it seems apparent that Kraft has given Belichick carte blanch as to when he could leave the Patriots, and that he doesn’t know because Belichick has not yet decided.
After bringing the Patriots franchise six Super Bowl championship rings during his tenure, including wins in 2017 and 2019, Belichick seems to have absolute power over his career trajectory and which direction it may go when the time comes.
Here’s a rundown of all the questions and possible answers pertaining to the future of Belichick’s contact:
Will Belichick Leave The Patriots When Tom Brady Leaves? Or Choose To Take Over Another Franchise To Coach?
The keyword throughout the entire discussion of Belichick’s career is “choice.” No one is telling Belichick what do or where to go other than himself.
There’s been much speculation that when Patriots veteran quarterback Tom Brady decides to hang up his helmet, Belichick will also call it a career.
While Brady’s impending free agency in 2020 has been a hot topic of discussion, Belichick’s own departure is always the next question. It’s long been assumed that Belichick is a lifer in New England, but there is actually a real threat of he could leave the Patriots for another franchise.
The Patriots have reportedly put together a list of potential head coaches, they are unconfirmed rumors. Belichick is the longest-tenured head coach in the entire league and recently named to the NFL’s 100 All-Time Team. During his 20 seasons in New England, Belichick, he’s led Brady and the Patriots to a total of nine Super Bowls, establishing 19 consecutive winning seasons and 16 division titles.
No matter how the 2020 playoff run goes for the Patriots, Belichick is not going to be fired or forced out.
Will Belichick Stick Around To Answer The ‘Big Question: Did The Patriots Become A Dynasty Because of Him Or Because Of Brady?
At age 67, he’s likely reaching the end of his sooner rather than later, which could mean one of three things. Belichick may want to face a new challenge before he officially calls it a career, proving that he can take any franchise to a Super Bowl while he’s at the helm.
If Brady decides to exercise his free agency in 2020 or chooses simply retire, Belichick may want to stay in New England and prove that the franchise can succeed without their veteran golden boy.
The last option, one for which would be a watershed moment in New England, both Brady and Belichick, who’ve been working together since 2000, leave the NFL together, the chicken-or-the-egg question remaining forever debatable lore.
When Will Belichick Actually Retire?
Belichick is no spring chicken. He’s the second-oldest head coach in the NFL after the Seattle Seahawk’s Pete Carroll. Belichick has stressed that he still plans on coaching in the near future — despite previously indicating he wouldn’t coach past age 70.
“When I said it, maybe I didn’t know what 70 felt like,” Belichick said during his weekly appearance on sports radio WEEI in October. “So I’m not really sure if that’s an accurate statement today or not. At the time, I didn’t feel that way. Now that I’m closer to that age, I don’t know.”