Patriots

Delaying interviews cost Josh McDaniels his shots at Giants, Panthers jobs

Delaying interviews cost Josh McDaniels his shots at Giants, Panthers jobs

When Tuesday morning dawned, Josh McDaniels was set to get on a plane to Charlotte to sit with the Panthers for their head coaching vacancy. Wednesday, he’d be in New York to talk to the Giants.

But before lunchtime, both jobs were filled. McDaniels — presumed to be a leading candidate for both the Panthers and Giants — had put on his suit and straightened his tie in the mirror for nothing.

There’s still a Friday interview scheduled with the Browns for their vacancy, but the fast-moving process and the Patriots asking McDaniels to hold off interviewing until Tuesday so he could button up end-of-season write-ups undeniably cost him a shot at pitching himself.

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Joe Judge, the Patriots special teams/wide receivers coach, ultimately got the Giants job. His interview timeline was a lot different than McDaniels’. Judge interviewed with his alma mater Mississippi State on Sunday, the day after the Patriots were eliminated from the playoffs.

With Mississippi State pushing Judge for an answer, Judge got the OK to sit with the Giants. 

The shutting doors that left McDaniels out in the cold began closing Tuesday morning when the Panthers decided to hire Baylor coach Matt Rhule and cancel the McDaniels interview.

The Giants were also high on Rhule. Having missed out on him, they were now were wary of losing Judge to Mississippi State. Strange but true. 

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Meanwhile, the Giants presumed McDaniels, who interviewed with the Giants in January 2018 and was leery of the head coach/GM setup with Dave Gettleman in place, would have the same concerns this time. So rather than miss out on Judge, they made their move and hired him.

Judge’s candidacy was buttressed by a “glowing” recommendation from Bill Belichick that reportedly played a “huge” role in the Giants’ decision.

It’s easy to conclude there’s a level of disappointment for McDaniels with the way this played out.

Would that make him more inclined to take the Browns job? Doubtful. He’s carefully measured his steps since coming back to the Patriots, and jumping to the Browns without being confident in their direction would be foolish.

The Patriots have been the beneficiaries of his caution. He’s helped them win three Super Bowls since coming back and the 2018 end-of-season run and march through the playoffs had Belichick devoting most of the documentary “Do Your Job III” to McDaniels’ brilliance.

McDaniels has benefited as well. He’s the highest-paid assistant coach in the NFL and has been since the Patriots convinced him to pass on the Colts job at the 11th hour two years ago. The Patriots are a better team with him than without him, especially as they head into an offseason of offensive uncertainty.

The way it played out, the chances of McDaniels staying increased on Tuesday.

 

NFL Rumors: Could Patriots videotaping investigation punishment come soon?

NFL Rumors: Could Patriots videotaping investigation punishment come soon?

Stop us if you've heard this before: An investigation into a Boston-area sports team has dragged on longer than expected.

The NFL launched its investigation into the Patriots back in December after the Bengals caught a New England staffer videotaping their sideline from Cincinnati's press box during a Week 14 game.

The Patriots issued a statement addressing the incident and footage of their film went public, but the league still hasn't concluded its investigation more than two months later.

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A verdict could be coming soon, however, as The Boston Globe's Ben Volin reports the NFL is "getting closer to wrapping up" its investigation.

From Volin:

Last week, NFL Security completed what was believed to be the final interview with a Patriots employee. Now the security officials must write up their report, then hand it up the chain of command, where it will eventually land on the desk of commissioner Roger Goodell, who will approve of a final course of action.

There's still no precise timetable for that course of action, per Volin.

Head coach Bill Belichick has maintained that his football staff had no connection whatsoever to the illegal videotaping, but New England still could face punishment in the form of a fine and/or loss of a mid-round draft pick.

Will that punishment come before Major League Baseball concludes its never-ending investigation into the 2018 Boston Red Sox? That's anyone's guess.

Patriots' Bill Belichick went to Middle Tennessee State to scout this draft prospect

Patriots' Bill Belichick went to Middle Tennessee State to scout this draft prospect

Bill Belichick's "No Days Off" mentality was on full display Monday as he was seen at Middle Tennessee State's campus to scout defensive end Tyshun Render.

Belichick stood amid plenty of rain to watch Render work out. Check out the scene in the photos below.

Render was not among the draft prospects invited to the 2020 NFL Scouting Combine, so it makes sense that Belichick would stop in Murfreesboro, Tenn., before heading to Indianapolis.

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The senior defensive end set career highs with 36 solo tackles, 3.5 sacks, two fumble recoveries, one interception and five passes defensed in 12 games for Middle Tennessee in 2019. He is listed at 6-foot-4 and 256 pounds. The Patriots had one of the league's best defenses last season, but you can never have enough quality pass rushers, and Render had a solid 2019 campaign.

Render is projected as a Day 3 prospect for the 2020 NFL Draft, so if he's selected, it likely will happen in the fourth, fifth, sixth or seventh round. The Patriots are expected to have as many as 12 picks (including compensatory selections) in April's draft, including eight on Day 3.

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