The Patriots have the NFL’s best defense, but they don’t have a defensive coordinator, and it’s never been clear who exactly is making the play calls on Sundays. But it appears that the primary play caller on New England’s defense is Steve Belichick, the safeties coach and son of head coach Bill Belichick.
The Boston Herald reports that several players confirmed Steve Belichick has taken over the primary play calling role. That contradicts some previous reports that inside linebackers coach Jerod Mayo was calling the defensive plays.
The Patriots have gone through three defensive coordinators in the last two years: Matt Patricia left to coach the Lions, then Brian Flores left to coach the Dolphins, then Greg Schiano resigned for personal reasons. Steve Belichick, who’s in his eighth year working for his dad, is the defensive coach who’s been with the program the longest.
Obviously, Steve Belichick wouldn’t be where he is without his dad giving him the job. And even if Steve is the primary play caller, his father undoubtedly deserves most of the credit for the well-coached Patriots defense. But players in New England have raved about their experience working with Steve Belichick. And even though the Patriots are always tight-lipped about the role that any individual coach plays in preparing the team, Steve Belichick is starting to get more credit for his own coaching work.