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News Blitz 2/7: McDaniels reverses course

You'd almost think the Patriots, not the Eagles, won Super Bowl LII the other day, with all the attention New England has been getting since then.

Today, the top story is offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, who was believed to be on his way to Indianapolis to be introduced as the Colts' new head coach. Instead, the 41-year-old assistant is staying in Foxborough. NFL.com and ESPN's website offer similar accounts of how McDaniels called a last-minute audible to remain with the Patriots.

"McDaniels met for hours with Patriots coach Bill Belichick, owner Robert Kraft and president Jonathan Kraft," the NFL.com piece asserts, "who laid out how they felt about him and the process going forward -- one that surely seems tied to Belichick's future plans."

"The more McDaniels reflected on potentially having the opportunity to coach the Colts," ESPN's story claims, "the more it did not feel right to him and the better it felt to remain in New England. McDaniels still would like to become a head coach again, but this time, in this instance, he was not comfortable."

A separate ESPN blog post addresses the question of what this decision means for McDaniels' future and the Patriots'.

"[I]t seems fair to say he will be given a prime opportunity to succeed Belichick [as head coach] if he so desires," the writer speculates.

Boston Globe and *Boston Herald *columnists goes further, saying McDaniels is the heir to Belichick.

"The Patriots already let one succession plan walk out the door when they traded away Jimmy Garoppolo. They weren't going to make the same mistake twice," writes the Globe.

"Say hello to the next head coach of the New England Patriots: Josh McDaniels. The only question left to answer is when will that transition happen," says the Herald.

An opinion piece on NBCSportsBoston.com goes into more detail on the subject of McDaniels' decision to stay.

"Stability in New England, the program in place with personnel czar and longtime friend Nick Caserio, and the chance to keep his family rooted in New England were all convincers."

Meanwhile, in another huge Patriots-related story this week, cornerback Malcolm Butler issued a statement on social media denying reports that he brought his Super Bowl benching on himself with his behavior on and off the field last week. Teammates, including QB Tom Brady, came to his defense, as seen in a boston.com post.       

As if that weren't enough, there's the Case of the Robbed Gronkowski. *The Providence Journal *has details of a tight end Rob Gronkowski's home being burglarized during the Super Bowl.

This comes as the Eagle-Tribune reports that Gronk could be considering a new career in Hollywood?

Gronkowski "has been told by two Hollywood superstars, Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson and Sylvester Stallone, that he could make millions of dollars in action films," the story explains.

Welcome to the offseason, folks.

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