Unless Brian Flores pulls a Josh McDaniels, the New England Patriots will be looking for a new defensive play-caller when their season concludes following Super Bowl LIII.

Flores, who is expected to be named head coach of the Miami Dolphins, was the Patriots’ de facto defensive coordinator this season after Matt Patricia left last offseason to become the Detroit Lions’ head coach. While some reports have speculated that former Ohio State defensive coordinator and Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano would fill Flores’ position as defensive coordinator, it looks like another former college coach might be moving up the ranks in Bill Belichick’s staff.

Ben Volin of The Boston Globe reported Sunday, citing a league source, that current Patriots consultant Bret Bielema “has been telling people that he’s going to become the Patriots’ next defensive coordinator.”

Bielema was the head coach of the Wisconsin Badgers from 2006 to 2012 before leaving to become the head coach at Arkansas. The 49-year-old went 29-34 in five seasons in Fayetteville before being fired at the end of the 2017 season. He has spent the last year as a consultant to Belichick.

New England normally keeps its coaching hires in-house so the promotion of Bielema, while a little out of left field, wouldn’t be completely out of character for Belichick and the Patriots.

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