Patriots Great Gives Potential Bill Belichick Successor Glowing Endorsement

Bill Belichick

Getty Bill Belichick's potential successor has received a glowing endorsement from a New England Patriots' Hall of Famer.

If Bill Belichick’s time with the New England Patriots is up, one of the head coach’s greatest players wants Jerod Mayo to replace him. Ty Law, who won three Super Bowls on Belichick’s watch during a Hall of Fame career, believes Mayo’s own experience as a player, along with his business acumen, make him the right man to rebuild the Patriots.

Speaking on WEEI’s “The Greg Hill Show” (h/t’s Lauren Campbell), Law said Mayo “has the respect. And you have to relate to — look at what Antonio Pierce is doing with the Raiders. They rally around him. Look at how the (Patriots’) defense is playing. They’re down, they’re banged up, and he’s got those boys playing. They’re being competitive even though they don’t have very many pieces. You have to give credit somewhere, and Jerod Mayo is that guy. He has the respect of not only players, but his peers, and he played the game.”

Law also backed Mayo, who is currently inside linebackers coach on Belichick’s staff, to purge the playing roster and coaching contingent: “Let me tell you something: If Jerod Mayo was the head coach, he wouldn’t have a problem firing the whole damn staff. That’s who he is as a person. He’s gonna look at it from a business standpoint. It’s not gonna be about making friends or anything like that. Jerod Mayo is the type of guy — he was a businessman before he got into coaching. He made some good business moves out there. He was in that world. So, he’s gonna look at it from a strategic and a business standpoint. I don’t think just because he’s coached with you that he’s gonna be obligated to give you a job.”

Those words are a glowing endorsement of Mayo, who has emerged as a “logical successor” for Belichick. Yet, the rising assistant has already had to deal with criticism of his credentials and coaching style.

Ty Law’s Right About Players Respecting Jerod Mayo

If you don’t think Mayo is the right choice to replace Belichick, it’s worth considering what the assistant’s players say about him. Players like defensive end Deatrich Wise Jr., who credited Mayo with preparing the unit to frustrate Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills in Week 17.

Wise called the gameplan a “Big testament to (Jerod) Mayo. He gets us ready every day,” per NBCS Boston’s Phil Perry.

Wise isn’t the only member of the New England defense impressed with Mayo’s style of coaching. Linebacker Mack Wilson, a versatile hidden gem who’s broken out this season, credited Mayo for helping develop him in an increased role as a pass-rusher.

Wilson appreciated Mayo admitting a mistake and using him in more creative ways this season, per ESPN’s Mike Reiss.

Improving individual players and earning the confidence of the collective are essential for any would-be head coach. Mayo is ticking both boxes, and that should be enough to ease the minds of doubters who’d prefer the Patriots replace Belichick with an offensive-minded head coach.

The Pats will almost certainly select a quarterback atop the 2024 NFL draft to replace Bailey Zappe and Mac Jones. Yet, the next QB1 doesn’t need a head coach with a background on offense.

DeMeco Ryans has worked wonders with rookie signal-caller C.J. Stroud for the Houston Texans, straight after a stint as defensive coordinator for the San Francisco 49ers.

Mayo could have the same impact in New England, provided he grasps intangibles like handling the media. Fortunately, the 37-year-old recently earned plaudits for the latter.

Jerod Mayo Earned Plaudits for Recent Response

Mayo found himself embroiled in a certain amount of controversy when a report emerged he’s “rubbed at least some people the wrong way” this season. He told NBC Sports Boston’s Patriots Coverage the report “was more hurtful than anything.”

Perhaps the most impressive part of Mayo’s answer was when he admitted he’d “thought about it for a while,” referring to the accusations. The coach who played eight seasons as a middle linebacker for the Patriots explained, “when people talk about rubbing people the wrong way, sometimes that’s part of the job of being a leader.”

Mayo’s evenhanded response drew praise from’s Karen Guregian, who believes owner Robert Kraft will have been impressed: “Mayo said all the things the Patriots owner would want someone in his employ – and possibly his next head coach – to say in that situation.”

Meanwhile, the source of the original report, Greg A. Bedard of the Boston Sports Journal, told 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Felger & Massarotti (h/t NBC Sports Boston), “Quite honestly, no one really cared about Jerod Mayo until it became clear, or there was the potential, that he was going to be the head coach of the New England Patriots after the season.”

He may have been a relative unknown in coaching circles before this season, but Mayo has been quietly building an impressive reputation. One that could earn him the shot to replace six-time Super Bowl winner Belichick.