New England Patriots

Belichick addresses contract, timeline of ‘decision' about Pats future

"As far as any decisions ... it's way too early for that."

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One day after wrapping up his worst season ever as an NFL head coach, Bill Belichick didn't sound like someone who expects to lose his job in the near future.

In a video conference with reporters Monday morning following a 17-3 loss to the New York Jets that landed the New England Patriots at 4-13, Belichick suggested this week will be business as usual despite multiple reports that the team plans to part ways with him this offseason.

"I'm under contract. I'm going to do what I always do, which is every day I come in, work as hard as I can to help the team in whatever way I can," Belichick told reporters. "So that's what I'm going to continue to do."

Belichick is usually intensely private about his contract, so it's notable that he mentioned his deal is still active. (Our Tom E. Curran reported in October that Belichick's contract runs through 2024.) Belichick also seemed to acknowledge that team owner Robert Kraft might make a "decision" about his future at some point, but apparently believes that decision isn't imminent.

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"Today was kind of the wrap-up day for us with the players," Belichick said. "We'll have a meeting with them and then go from there. As far as any decisions or direction or anything like that for next year, it's way too early for that.

"The end-of-the-year process I don't think will be fundamentally any different from the standpoint of how it's done. The decisions, that's another conversation, but how it's done, I'll meet with Robert like I always do, meet with the staff, meet with the personnel department, kind of recap the season with the big picture and look at some of the individual situations that are looming one way or another.

"But that's obviously a long, long way off from where we are right now."

Belichick is set to meet with Kraft at some point Monday, according to ESPN's Mike Reiss. But the 71-year-old head coach seems to believe there will be a longer process of evaluating the 2023 season. Most notably, he also seems open to any changes that will improve the team in 2024 -- even if that means staying on board as head coach but giving up personnel control.

"I’m for whatever we decide collectively as an organization is the best thing to help our football team,” Belichick said when asked if he'd be willing to relinquish final say in personnel decisions. “I have multiple roles in that, and I rely on a lot of people to help me in those responsibilities. If somebody’s got to have the final say, I rely on a lot of other people to help. Whatever that process is, I’m only part of it."

The bottom line? It sounds like Belichick is continuing to operate as Patriots head coach until someone tells him otherwise.

"We'll start, at the end of the day, putting the pieces back together in terms of setting things up to go through a good detailed analysis and to kind of start a reconstruction, if you will," he added.

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