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Report: Patriots re-hire Dante Scarnecchia as OL coach

Indianapolis Colts v New England Patriots

FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 18: Dante Scarnecchia of the New England Patriots watches on before a game with the Indianapolis Colts at Gillette Stadium on November 18, 2012 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

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There was word last week that the Patriots were talking to former offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia about returning to his old job after two years off the sideline.

Those talks appear to have progressed to an agreement. Adam Caplan of ESPN reports that the team has re-hired Scarnecchia after parting ways with Dave DeGuglielmo last month. DeGuglielmo landed a job with the Chargers a short time later.

Scarnecchia hasn’t been too far removed from the team since retiring after the 2013 season. He’s helped them evaluate offensive linemen ahead of the draft in the last two seasons so he likely has a pretty good grasp on many of the players that he’ll be working with once the team’s offseason program gets underway.

The key will be for Scarnecchia to get those players performing at a higher level than they were at when the season came to an end. Better health will be an important part of that as the team was constantly shuffling bodies around to cover for missing players, but there’s work to be done on the execution as well.

This will be Scarnecchia’s third stint in New England. He was the special teams and tight ends coach from 1982 to 1988 and then returned to the team in 1991 after a couple of years coaching the Colts offensive line.