ALABAMA (WHNT) — The Crimson Tide’s Offensive Coordinator Bill O’Brien will officially be leaving the Yellowhammer state and heading north to transfer his position with the New England Patriots.
According to ESPN, O’Brien’s return to New England was recently made official, though with his contract set to expire in February, was a “long-speculated” move. He was previously the Patriots’ Assistant Coach from 2007-2011.
O’Brien, 53, will be returning to coach Mac Jones, whom he worked with at Alabama.
Tide and Patriot fans alike have been trolling social media with the news, teasing that a return of Brady is also “likely,” citing the obvious chemistry the two have had in the past.
O’Brien reportedly agreed to a deal early Tuesday, after spending the past two years under Nick Saban, to head back to where his NFL career began nearly 16 years ago. That first stint saw O’Brien rise swiftly through the ranks on Belichick’s staff.
Since then, he has been in head-coaching positions at Penn State from 2012-2013 and with the Houston Texans from 2014-2020.
The Massachusetts native will be tasked with improving the Patriots’ offense for the 2023 season.
Saban will be left to search for his sixth offensive coordinator in the past eight seasons; the last five – Steve Sarkisian, Mike Locksley, Brian Daboll, Lane Kiffin and O’Brien – are all NFL head coaches or offensive coordinators (or Power 5 head coaches).
Defensive coordinator Pete Golding left Saban for the same position at Ole Miss earlier this month, while safeties coach Charles Kelly clutched Deion Sanders’ defensive coordinator role at Colorado.