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Patriots hire Bill O’Brien as offensive coordinator

New England began negotiations with linebackers coach Jerod Mayo to keep him on the Patriots staff, and they will also begin interviews with potential offensive coordinators next week.

Bill O’Brien is returning to New England to try to revitalized the Patriots’ offense.

O’Brien will be the Patriots’ new offensive coordinator, according to ESPN.

This will be O’Brien’s second stint as the Patriots’ offensive coordinator, a title he previously had in 2011. He also spent 2007-2010 with the Patriots in various offensive assistant roles.

For the last two seasons, O’Brien has been the offensive coordinator at Alabama. Before that he was head coach of the Texans, and before that head coach at Penn State.

Last year the Patriots didn’t have anyone with the title of offensive coordinator, but the primary offensive coordinator duties were handled by Matt Patricia, and the result was a disaster. This year head coach Bill Belichick will hope that a return of O’Brien can represent a return to the days when the Patriots were the NFL’s premiere franchise.