McDaniels explains how he handled Pats exit, taking coaches to Raiders


It appears there's no "bad blood" between Josh McDaniels and Bill Belichick after the new Raiders head coach took three New England Patriots assists with him to Las Vegas.

The way McDaniels went about hiring them probably helped.

The former Patriots offensive coordinator said Wednesday he spoke with Belichick "directly" before adding Patriots assistants Mick Lombardi (offensive coordinator), Carmen Bricillo (offensive line coach) and Bo Hardegree (quarterbacks coach) to his Raiders staff.

"I have great respect for Bill and that process," McDaniels told reporters at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. "I spoke to him directly multiple times about any interest I had in people that were there. ... Never want to do the wrong thing."

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McDaniels spent a total of 18 years on Belichick's staff in Foxboro, so it's no surprise he tried to handle things the right way here. His exit still leaves the Patriots in a bind, though. Their current offensive setup -- Joe Judge reportedly working with quarterbacks, Matt Patricia reportedly working with the offensive line and no official play-caller -- has left some NFL personnel at the combine "flabbergasted", according to our Phil Perry.

New England made a successful effort to keep McDaniels in February 2018 after he accepted the Indianapolis Colts head coach job. It sounds like a similar effort wasn't made this time around, though.

"It really wasn't about that," McDaniels said when Perry asked if the team made an attempt to keep him around. "To me, this was just an opportunity that I felt like I couldn't pass up. I've waited a long time to try to have an opportunity to do this. I wanted to really try to improve and take whatever time necessary I needed to do it really well, as best I could. And I think I've done that.

"I don't think they really owed that to me. I can't even tell you how much they've done for me and my career, my life, my family. So, what they've done for me and the opportunities that they've given me and what they've rewarded me with personally and professionally, there was no need to do anything like that."

McDaniels had a solid situation in Foxboro working with talented young quarterback Mac Jones. But NFL head coach opportunities don't come around very often, and it was finally time for the 45-year-old to take another stab at the role after his ill-fated first attempt with the Denver Broncos in 2009-10.

"This was really a decision about what was best for me at this time and the challenge I could take on here in Vegas," McDaniels added, "and I'm excited to do that."

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