NFL Rumors: Matt Patricia ‘Leading Candidate’ If Lions’ Head-Coaching Job Opens


Dec 30, 2017

The New England Patriots reportedly could lose at least one coordinator this offseason if the Detroit Lions fire head coach Jim Caldwell.

Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia is considered the “leading candidate” for the Lions’ head-coaching position if Caldwell is fired, NFL Media’s Mike Silver reported Saturday.

Lions general manager Bob Quinn is the Patriots’ former director of pro scouting. He worked with Patricia on the Patriots from 2004 to 2016, when Quinn was hired by the Lions.

Patricia has been the Patriots’ defensive coordinator since 2012. He’s never been a head coach at any level.

Patricia was hired by the Patriots as an offensive assistant in 2004. He then moved up to assistant offensive line coach in 2005, linebackers coach in 2006, safeties coach in 2011 and defensive coordinator in 2012.

The Patriots were ranked first in the NFL in points allowed last season. They rank seventh in 2017.

The Patriots’ other top assistant coach, offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, also is considered a top head-coaching candidate.

Patricia is known for his signature backward hat and long beard. He wore a Barstool Sports T-shirt with the image of NFL commissioner Roger Goodell as a clown after the Patriots won Super Bowl LI. He might have to clean up his image if he becomes a head coach.

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