Report: Steve Belichick serving as Patriots’ defensive play caller

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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.

48 responses to “Report: Steve Belichick serving as Patriots’ defensive play caller

  1. Jeez as a kid I would’ve loved knowing more football than anyone but my father. Love to see what the future holds for this kid

  2. Bill’s father Steve was also a coach. So is another son. It’s the family profession. Steve got his chance with his Dad, but he would be hired by anybody.

  3. I dubbed this guy the DC before the season started. Everyone things BB is hanging around to groom McDaniels for the HC spot but I truly think he’s grooming Steve.

  4. Bill is grooming his son for a head coaching job. This news, will make him high on the list for the open coaching positions this off season.

  5. The annual salary and performance review could be interesting. “Dad, I need a bigger allowance.”

  6. Pee Wee Herman could call plays and be successful with the QBs they’ve faced. Big Ben, Ryan Fitzpatrick/Josh Rosen, Luke Falk, Josh Allen/Matt Barkley, Colt McCoy, Daniel Jones, Sam Darnold and Baker Mayfield.

  7. You can tell during the games that Steve, Bill, and Jerod Mayo are running the defense.

    Seems to be working out for them so far.

  8. Runs in the family.

    Malcolm Butler will be sitting at home sucking his thumb come January again.

    It was likely Steve who said in 2017 “it was a challenge getting him prepared (mentally) every week.

  9. Tony and Jim pointed this out late in the game broadcast. I hope Steve does well, but he’s screwed out of the gate with the inevitable comparisons to his father.

  10. I am always somewhat skeptical of reports out of the New England organization. And if Steve Belichick is the one making the calls, that is great, he should be recognized on his own merits. Here is what is inarguable, their defense is awesome this year and is dominating their opponents.

  11. jluckow says:
    November 2, 2019 at 9:09 am
    Josh McDaniels is sitting there like “crap….” He’s going to get jumped in line for succession rights to Bill lol


    LOL I thought the same but I bet Josh has the helm for a couple of years and Steve earns it the way he needs too. Also someone mentioned Nepotism, that gets you the job, but hard work and dedication lets you keep the job.

  12. When exploring the Belichick coaching tree don’t forget that Bill’s daughter Amanda is coaching Lacrosse at Holy Cross College. Yet another apple off the tree.

  13. I trust in BB to always do what’s best for the team. Son or not – Steve is deserving or he wouldn’t be there. Maybe there just a couple of years ahead of plan due to Schianos mysterious disappearance.

  14. It really took 8 games to figure out who’s calling the plays on defense…the patriots are on another level man

  15. Daddy B may have helped Steve to get his foot in the door, but he’s not going to succeed riding his dad’s coattails. He’s going to succeed on his own merit, which I think he will. Future Patriots head coach? We’ll see.

  16. camcameronsucks says: Isn’t nepotism great
    Except Pats have one of the NFL’s smallest staffs so there’s no room for deadwood. And Steve wasn’t shoed-in but spent 8 years progressing up the ladder, and already has rings. But worst part of it for you and the rest of the salty mountain of hate is: the dynasty will go on.

  17. He’s probably pretty good at it. I can’t imagine one of the greatest coaches in the history of the game letting flesh and blood get in the way of putting a good product on the field. And the results speak for themselves.

  18. “I bet Josh has the helm for a couple of years and Steve earns it the way he needs too. Also someone mentioned Nepotism, that gets you the job, but hard work and dedication lets you keep the job.”

    Remember that a lot of young coaches are getting their opportunities at head coaching jobs early. McVay, Shanahan. The possibility that Steve may jump ship is incentive to promote him over McDaniels when Bill decides to hang it up.

  19. Heir to the throne. It’s in the blood and this kid is doing something right considering this is the best defense the Pats have ever had. He’ll be ready to take the reins in about 4 or 5 years after BB retires. He’s going to be in demand soon

  20. This is typical Belichick way. He does not name the defensive coordinator,
    often in the person first year of actually performing the position.
    This occurred when Belichick first served as Parcells defensive coordinator.
    After a year or two the coach is actually given the title should he
    earn the stripe.
    I am sure this was earned by Stephen, in fact, he probably had to
    work twice as hard.
    Finally if I am not mistaken when I have looked to the press box/coaching
    box…..isn’t that another Belichick up there? Perhaps the younger son?
    Say what you will about the Belichicks, it’s pretty tough to outwork that family.

  21. camcameronsucks says:
    November 2, 2019 at 9:24 am
    Isn’t nepotism great

    So you are saying that whoever is calling defensive plays for the Pats this year isnt showing they have the merit for the job?

  22. Let’s belittle someone because they were born into a certain family….where have I seen this before?

  23. When you have talent calling plays is easy. Fans think it is the play calling that makes things happen but that is because they never put on a helmet. There are literally thousands of guys who could call plays for this defense, it isn’t rocket science.

  24. Those thinking that Steve will stay in NE as next in line for HC, you have to believe that Steve will want to carve his own path away from his father when it’s time to be HC. He wont be staying in NE.

  25. Like father, like son! He’s better than both Patricia and Flores just by his last name.

  26. I believe Bill is truly having a great time this year because he is SO involved with the defense. I’ve accepted the fact the Patriots will be in the SUPER BOWL again and it will be because of tgis great defense.

  27. How old is Brady’s son… Can you imagine Bill and Tom’s kids taking up the Pats torch for another 20 year dynasty… NFL heads would explode.

  28. firerogergoodellnow says:
    November 2, 2019 at 9:53 am

    The Bengals passed on Bill Cowher and hired Don Shula’s son Dave who became the fastest coach to 50 losses.
    Unless Mike Brown decided to sell the family business I doubt even Bill Cowher could have been successful there.

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