Bill Belichick will not be on the sidelines this season, but the former New England Patriots head coach reportedly is confident he won’t be in the same situation next year.

ESPN’s Don Van Natta Jr., Seth Wickersham and Jeremy Fowler co-authored a thorough report released Wednesday that gave inside details on the factors that resulted in Belichick going without a job in the head-coaching hiring cycle.

The Falcons came the closest to hiring the 72-year-old, but Patriots owner Robert Kraft reportedly played a key role in dissuading Atlanta owner Arthur Blank from hiring Belichick. Raheem Morris was hired instead.

Belichick is expected to sign a deal to do analysis for Peyton Manning’s Omaha Productions, according to the ESPN report. But he doesn’t expect to remain in his analyst role for long.

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“He is believed to be biding his time until next January for openings on teams he has told confidants he would be interested in coaching: the Dallas Cowboys, Philadelphia Eagles and New York Giants,” ESPN reported. “A source who spoke with a longtime friend of Belichick said the friend wonders if the coach will have another opportunity: ‘I don’t think Bill Belichick will ever be a head coach again in the National Football League,’ the friend said. ‘Unless it’s (for) Jerry Jones.'”

Belichick reportedly liked the idea of coaching Dallas as a way to “stick it” to Kraft. However, Mike McCarthy will coach the Cowboys this season in the final year of his contract.

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Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie reportedly was hesitant to pursue Belichick this offseason because there was concern that he’d only coach the team for at most two seasons. Philadelphia might not have wanted to overhaul the entire organization just for short-term gain.

The Giants could present a reunion for the former New York defensive coordinator, and another disappointing season from Brian Daboll could force a coaching change in the Meadowlands.

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Fans will have to wait and see if Belichick will be considered for any openings in the next hiring cycle, but it would not be a surprise if his name gets floated during the season if those three NFC East teams falter in any way.

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