Next Pats Podcast

Ex-NFL players explain why Van Pelt is ‘really good hire' for Pats

Alex Van Pelt will replace Bill O'Brien as the Patriots' offensive coordinator.

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Alex Van Pelt will be one of the New England Patriots' most important pieces when they begin the post-Bill Belichick era next season.

In early February, new head coach Jerod Mayo and the Patriots hired Van Pelt to replace Bill O'Brien as offensive coordinator. Van Pelt previously served as the Cleveland Browns' offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach from 2020 to 2023. He was fired after the Browns' playoff loss to the Houston Texans.

A longtime coach and former NFL quarterback, Van Pelt brings plenty of experience running offenses with him to New England. He'll be counted on to help revive an offense that has struggled mightily the last couple of years, and if the Patriots draft a young QB next month, he'll play a crucial role in their development.

Is the future of the Patriots offense in good hands with Van Pelt? Former NFL offensive linemen Marshall Newhouse and Ross Tucker have history with New England's OC, and they shared their insight on a new episode of the Next Pats Podcast.

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Newhouse had a positive impression of Van Pelt from their time together in Green Bay.

"He's an exceptional mind on offense, so I think that's a really good hire," Newhouse said. ... "He's a guy's guy, but just with a high level of accountability. ... He's trying to put his players as they are in the best situations to succeed. Obviously, pushing them to be more and be better. ...

"He's got experience coaching with Aaron Rodgers. He was the OC or co-OC, quarterbacks coach in Cleveland. .. And I think he's also a good manager of men. People respect him. He comes to you with respect. And I think that'll be a great thing in that building with just an entirely new regime change."

Tucker was a teammate of Van Pelt's on the Buffalo Bills in 2003. Like Newhouse, he had nothing but positive things to say about him.

"Very authentic, very genuine," Tucker said of Van Pelt. "I would not say he is the most outgoing guy. He's not going to be the loudest guy in the room, but everyone will respect everything he says. He'll have the respect of all the guys just based on how he carries himself. And there's a reason why Aaron Rodgers swears by him."

Also in the episode:

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