FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Patriots introduced Jerod Mayo as their new head coach at a press conference at Gillette Stadium today. He becomes the 15th head coach in franchise history.
Mayo was drafted by the Patriots in the first round (10th overall) of the 2008 draft out of Tennessee and spent his entire NFL career in New England before retiring following the 2015 season. Mayo played linebacker and appeared in 103 games during his career, racking up 905 total tackles. He was named captain for seven consecutive seasons (2009-15) and is a 2014 Super Bowl Champion. Mayo made the Pro Bowl after the 2010 and 2012 seasons after leading the league in tackles each season. In 2010, he earned Associated Press first-team All-Pro honors. He led the Patriots in total tackles in each of his first five seasons and became just the second Patriots player to win the Associated Press Defensive Rookie of the Year award. Mayo played collegiately at Tennessee from 2005-07 and appeared in 32 games, registering 236 total tackles.
Mayo becomes the fourth person to be named head coach after playing for the previous coach with the same team since the 1970 merger. The others are Mike Tice of Minnesota (under Dennis Green), Jack Pardee of Washington (under George Allen) and Bart Starr of Green Bay (under Dan Devine).
Following his retirement, Mayo served as an executive in finance at Optum as vice president of business development before returning to the Patriots to start his coaching career as inside linebackers coach in 2019. While at Optum from 2016 through 2019, Mayo took the skills and understanding that he mastered in football and transformed himself into a business executive. While at Optum, he worked on consumer solutions with clients and consulted on mergers and acquisitions.
Since joining the Patriots coaching staff, the Patriots have finished in the top-10 in total defense in four of his five seasons, including in each of the last three seasons. The Patriots defense ranked first in the NFL in 2019. That year, Dont'a Hightower earned his second career Pro Bowl nod after the eight-year veteran totaled 71 tackles, 5½ sacks, four passes defensed and one fumble returned for a touchdown as part of a defense that finished No. 1 in the NFL in total defense (275.9 yards per game) and scoring (14.1 points allowed per game).
In 2022, the Patriots defense finished the season ranked 8th in yards allowed and tied for second with San Francisco with 30 total takeaways. Matthew Judon tallied career highs in sack totals in back-to-back seasons, recording 12½ sacks in 2021 and 15½ in 2022. The 15½ sacks rank third in team history and for a franchise record 102.5 sack yards. Judon earned his fourth straight Pro Bowl invitation and second straight with the Patriots. He also earned PFWA-All-AFC Team honors and was named the Week 5 AFC Defensive Player of the Week.
Josh Uche also recorded career highs in 2022, finishing with 11½ sacks for 49.5 yards. He had six sacks in a three-game span, second most in team history. Uche earned AFC Player of the Week honors in Week 14 after his three-sack performance against Arizona. In 2023, the Patriots defense finished ranked seventh in total defense. The Patriots allowed just 3.3 yards per rush, the lowest in the NFL in 2023 and the lowest in team history since the 1970 merger. The previous low was 3.4 yards per rush by the 1974 team.
Jerod Mayo was born Feb. 23, 1986, in Hampton, Va. His brother, Deron, joined the Patriots organization in 2018 as a strength & conditioning assistant coach. Jerod is the father to three daughters, Chya, Chyanne and Chylo, and a son, Jerod Jr.