The New England Patriots have granted three teams permission to speak to offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels about their head coaching position: the Cleveland Browns, Carolina Panthers and New York Giants, according to a Boston Globe report.
The Globe also reports that the Patriots granted the Giants permission to talk to special teams and wide receivers coach Joe Judge about their head coaching opening.
While it's unclear if McDaniels will talk any of the three teams or if Judge will talk to the Giants, Albert Breer from MMQB said on Early Edition on Wednesday night that McDaniels is already lining up staff for a potential move to Carolina or Cleveland.
"If he's offered the job in Carolina, if he's offered the job in Cleveland and the structure is right, he'll go," Breer said. "I don't think staying here is a consideration if things are right in either of those two places. I can tell you that he's already lining up staff...You're not doing these sorts of things unless you're planning to leave. "
On a conference call earlier this week, McDaniels told reporters: “I’m 100 percent fully invested in getting ready for Tennessee and trying to put our best performance of the season out there on Saturday night.”
The Patriots play a wild-card round playoff game Saturday against the Tennessee Titans at Gillette Stadium. If New England wins, a McDaniels interview would have to take place at a mutually acceptable time between the Patriots and the team he talks to. The same would apply to Judge and the Giants.
McDaniels, 43, from Barberton, Ohio, has been the Patriots offensive coordinator since 2012. He was head coach of the Denver Broncos from 2009-10 and famously jilted the Indianapolis Colts two years ago after they were about to introduce him as their head coach. He changed his mind after being lured back to New England with a five-year deal that reportedly made him the highest-paid coordinator in the NFL at more than $4 million a year.
Judge, 38, has been on the Patriots' staff since 2012.