So far this winter one of the biggest post-Super Bowl stories in New England has been the mass exodus of assistant coaches from Bill Belichick's staff. To date Brian Flores, Chad O'Shea, Jerry Schuplinski, Josh Boyer and Brendan Daly have all moved on to new jobs.
In terms of possible replacements for the coaching losses, initial reports have indicated that Greg Schiano will take over Flores' role as defensive play-caller/coordinator.
Now, WEEI.com passes along word from ESPN that New England will also add Mick Lombardi, son of longtime Belichick friend and former assistant Mike Lombardi, to the coaching staff moving forward. Lombardi previously had a low-level role in Foxborough and most recently worked in New York with the Jets quarterbacks.
The Boston Globe writes that the NFL is reportedly leaning against having the Patriots open up the 2019 season, an honor that's gone to the Super Bowl champion for nearly two decades.
WEEI.com says that Julian Edelman's value is his most overlooked trait. WEEI.com passes along word that Bill Belichick has updated the name of his boat to "VIII Rings," based on the number of Super Bowls he has won in his career. With Oklahoma Heisman-winner Kyler Murray committing to football, WEEI.com says it gives the Patriots another possible option to replace Tom Brady. WEEI.com also passes along safety Patrick Chung showing the scar from surgery on his broken arm on social media.
NBC Sports Boston wonders if the Patriots could take a chance on Murray in the draft. NBC Sports Boston also questions whether Schiano can have the type of first-year success that Flores did running the New England defense. In a story that's picked up steam since his Super Bowl LIII MVP performance, NBC Sports Boston says that Edelman deserves Hall of Fame consideration. NBC Sports Boston has Patriots players revealing some surprising things about Belichick. NBC Sports Boston blogs about Chung's number of stitches from his broken arm – 23 – matching his uniform number.
NFL.com lists the Patriots among eight possible fits for Murray now that he's committed to playing in the NFL. NFL.com lists the top 25 players set to hit free agency this offseason, with Trey Flowers as the top Patriots player coming in at No. 6 overall.
NESN.com writes that minimal changes are expected in the Patriots productive backfield.
MassLive.com ranks the Patriots list of would-be free agents.