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Patriots News and NFL Notes: 5 Things to Know For 5/11

Ian Logue
Ian Logue on Twitter
May 11, 2021 at 10:29 am ET

Patriots News and NFL Notes: 5 Things to Know For 5/11(PHOTO: USA TODAY Images)
Posted: May 11, 2021 10:29
🕑 Read Time: 4 minutes

Some news and notes on this Tuesday:

1) It’s interesting that there has been some talk recently about Matt Patricia potentially becoming the heir apparent to Bill Belichick, which Ben Volin of the Boston Globe talked about during an appearance on WEEI this weekend.

Volin believes this to be the case because of how deeply Patricia appears to be involved in the football operations.  The Boston Globe reporter pointed out that he’s been able to get a look at the contracts for several of the free agents New England has added this offseason, and Patricia’s signature has been on each one.

“I have been able to get every contract that they have done this offseason,” said Volin via  “Jonnu Smith, Hunter Henry, Nelson Agholor, etc. [and] Patricia’s signature is on every single one of them.”

Up until now, all signs have pointed to Josh McDaniels, not Patricia, as potentially being Belichick’s replacement if/when the time came.  That’s seemingly been even more apparent considering that despite taking interviews, he’s remained with the club and even walked away after taking a head coaching job in Indianapolis to come back despite being hired.

What could be happening is Belichick may be grooming Patricia for the role Nick Caserio handled, which seems to be the more likely scenario.  Volin intimated that Patricia might become both head coach and GM, but it would be hard to imagine Patricia, who went 13-29-1 in Detroit, becoming the club’s next head coach.

Will it happen?  Anything is possible, but given how significant Caserio’s loss was (he was involved everywhere, both on the field and in the front office), it could simply be that Belichick believes Patricia is the person he trusts the most to take all of that over.

Hopefully, it will be a while before we’ll even have to worry about that.  Belichick is still going strong and certainly hasn’t shown any signs of walking away anytime soon.

2) Rob Gronkowski appeared on ESPN Radio’s “Greeny” show recently and was asked about his relationship with his former head coach, but Gronkowski said there’s no animosity toward Belichick at all.

“I feel like we would just kick it off like we normally would, any event, talk some football real quick, because you know he’s got to always talk football, and just catch up quick,” Gronkowski said via “But I feel like there’ll be no problems at all and we’ll just kick it off like how we normally do.”

The former Patriots tight end came out of retirement last offseason, forcing a trade to Tampa Bay which netted the Patriots a fourth-round selection.

For Gronkowski, the move worked out as he was reunited with Tom Brady and the two obviously went on to win a championship this past February.

In the end, he’s thankful for his time and has no regrets.

“I’ve learned so much under that organization,” said Gronkowski. “I’ve learned so much football from the best coach — hands down, that will not change — the best coach in all of football, Coach Belichick… Mr. Kraft, too. They’re two guys that I look up to and will always look up to.”

3) Out in San Francisco, many within the media still appear to be surprised at the selection of Trey Lance.  Most of them spent the last month leading up to the draft believing the team was going to select Mac Jones, which has left some of them trying to read into whatever signs they felt they missed that Jones wasn’t the 49ers’ guy.

According to The Athletic, Sacramento Bee reporter Chris Biderman believed it was going to be Jones because that was what he was hearing from inside the organization.

“I’ve made it clear that I thought the pick was going to be Mac Jones and that was based on what I was hearing,” Sacramento Bee 49ers beat reporter Chris Biderman said on the “Candlestick Chronicles” podcast he shares with Kyle Madson of 95.7 The Game. “It’s an interesting dynamic because I think people who have listened to the pod would know that I didn’t really believe all of the Mac Jones stuff until last week. I want to be delicate because you do not want to burn your sources. But when you have sources and you talk to people and they tell you things, and you trust those people, you tend to believe them. Especially in situations where what you’re hearing is in congruence with what you’re seeing and what’s being reported elsewhere.”

The trade back on March 26th made it clear that the club was going to take a quarterback, with the only real question being who they were going to select.

There were apparently some outside factors that played a part. According to Pro Football Talk, the NFL asked the 49ers to make their intentions a secret leading up to the draft.  The reason was primarily since the first and second overall picks were essentially foregone conclusions, the league apparently wanted to maintain some level of interest at the top of the draft for ratings.

So, good for Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch for pulling it off.  But whether or not they made the right move remains to be seen.

4) Some sad news over the weekend as the twin brother of Chicago Bears running back Tarik Cohen was reportedly found dead in North Carolina after having been reported missing.

According to the Raleigh Police, Tyrell Cohen was found dead near the Duke Power substation near Lead Mine and Six Forks Roads.

Police said they didn’t suspect any foul play, with an employee reportedly discovering Cohen’s body inside the substation’s perimeter.

Meanwhile, Tarik thanked everyone for the support on Twitter but asked for time to grieve.

5) For those who remember for Patriots QB Ryan Mallett, it appears he’s still playing football despite being out of the NFL.

According to Pro Football Talk, the former 2011 3rd round pick by the Patriots is playing for the Generals in the Spring League and led his team for a 21-19 win over the Jousters recently.

The Spring League refers to itself as “An elite professional football development league” with eight teams, four in the “North” (Alphas, Aviators, Conquerors, Linemen) and four in the “South” (Blues, Jousters, Generals, Sea Lions).  The league is playing a six-week season, with the games to be televised by both Fox and FS1. It was launched in 2017, with quite a few former NFL players quietly accounting for some of the rosters.

As for Mallett, he finished 20-of-31 for 252-yards during the victory.  For those who want to follow him, his next game is against the Sea Lions this weekend and will reportedly be televised on FS1.

About Ian Logue

Ian Logue is a Seacoast native and owner and senior writer for, an independent media site covering the New England Patriots and has been running this site in one form or another since 1997.

Posted Under: Patriots News
Tags: Bill Belichick Chicago Bears Hunter Henry John Lynch Jonnu Smith Josh McDaniels Kyle Shanahan Mac Jones Matt Patricia Nelson Agholor New England Patriots Nick Caserio Rob Gronkowski Ryan Mallett San Francisco 49ers Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tarik Cohen Tom Brady Trey Lance

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