Bill O’Brien sounds personally offended by the speculation surrounding Bill Belichick’s job status.

O’Brien, who has a long history with Belichick, was asked Tuesday whether it’s “awkward” to see his legendary boss pop up in hot-seat rumors. The Patriots offensive coordinator responded with a passionate defense of Belichick, who’s on the verge of authoring his third losing season in four years since Tom Brady left.

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“I would say that, because you’re so immersed in what you’re doing … that you really don’t see all of that,” O’Brien said during a video call. “Now, look, I’m not gonna sit here and tell you that when you’re home on a Saturday with your family, or whatever, that you don’t hear it or see it. Like, I understand that.

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“But, like, this is Bill Belichick we’re talking about. Bill Belichick has done so much for the game of football, the New England Patriots organization. It’s football, we’ve lost some tight games. You know, to think about what he’s done here in this organization, what he’s done for this community, what he’s done for this game — for the game, the game of football. He’s been 50 years in the game of football. Just to me, like, I think everybody just needs to understand look, we’ve all got to win. We understand we’re in a winning business. We’re not winning right now. But I think you’ve also got to step back and just (say), ‘Hey, look at what this guy’s done for the game of football.’ I think that’s very important to think about.”

Last Sunday makred another low point in Belichick’s post-Brady tenure.

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New England dropped to 2-9 with an ugly 10-7 road loss to the New York Giants. Most importantly, quarterback Mac Jones, whom Belichick drafted 15th overall in 2021, bottomed out while looking like a player who needs a fresh start elsewhere.

At this point, it’s hard to envision Belichick still coaching the Patriots in 2024. Nevertheless, he and New England will look to spark an improbable turnaround this Sunday when the Los Angeles Chargers visit Gillette Stadium.

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