Two of the most important contributors to the New England Patriots dynasty could join forces again.
With Tom Brady set to become a free agent after the season, he has a chance to choose his own path. And according to Outkick’s Jason Cole, the iconic quarterback shouldn’t be surprised if a Las Vegas Raiders team led by Josh McDaniels tries to secure his services.
“Mark [Davis] is embarrassed,” a former Raiders executive told Cole. “He was pissed last year when the Chiefs and Bears brought so many fans to town. Now it’s happening every week. He wants it to stop. He wanted Brady before when Jon Gruden finally turned it down and now, he wants Brady again. Mark thinks having McDaniels is going to be the key.”
But just because ownership wants to bring Brady to Vegas doesn’t mean it will happen.
“I’m hearing McDaniels is not so sure,” the executive told Cole.
Bill Belichick’s former assistant enters Week 18 with a 6-10 record and a clear need for a long-term answer at quarterback. After benching longtime starter Derek Carr for fourth-year pro Jarrett Stidham, the Raiders watched the ex-Patriot throw for 365 yards, three touchdowns, and two interceptions in a 37-34 loss to the San Francisco 49ers.
However, like Brady, Stidham has an expiring contract, which opens up a window of possibilities at the position for a Raiders franchise that’s featured Carr under center since 2014.
Tom Brady Has Several Paths to Consider
A reunion between Brady and McDaniels would instantly make Las Vegas a more viable threat in an AFC West division headlined by the Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Chargers.
Still, the seven-time Super Bowl winner may have some reservations about joining the Raiders. Having to get through Patrick Mahomes and Justin Herbert at least twice in 2023 would represent a significant challenge.
Plus, does Brady view Las Vegas as a true contender given the team’s defensive woes? The Raiders rank 25th in points allowed at 24.2 per game, which suggests they need major reinforcements on that side of the ball.
Meanwhile, Brady could take his talents elsewhere without having to worry about an underperforming defense. The 49ers boast one of the best units in the league and could offer the 45-year-old a chance to win one more ring before he retires.
Or, Brady could consider finishing his career in Miami, where he would have an opportunity to not only work with the speedy receiver duo of Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle but also face his former head coach at least two more times.
Could a Familiar Face Come Back to Foxborough This Offseason?
While Brady re-joining the Patriots remains a remote possibility, the odds of another familiar face returning to New England appear much stronger.
With Matt Patricia struggling in his first year as an offensive play caller, the idea of Bill O’Brien making his way back to the NFL has gained traction. After spending the last two years as Nick Saban’s offensive coordinator at Alabama, the former Houston Texans head coach has been mentioned as a potential candidate to reclaim the OC role in New England.
Whether Belichick feels compelled to replace Patricia remains a mystery. But if ownership intervenes, O’Brien should be considered one of the favorites to land the job.