Could Rich McKay, Bill Belichick coexist?

The Falcons seem to be very interested in Bill Belichick. The question is whether Belichick is interested in the Falcons.

Embedded within that question is whether Belichick is comfortable with the rest of the organization. In Atlanta, McKay has evolved over time into a job that has significant control over football, with none of the accountability.

In the 99-minute press conference the day the Falcons fired coach Arthur Smith, it was McKay sitting at the elbow of owner Arthur Blank. General Manager Terry Fontenot was nowhere to be seen. That's how it's been for a long time in Atlanta, with McKay shifting and sliding from job to job and title to title and duties to duties before becoming the CEO. He's intimately involved in football operations, but he doesn't get fired when it's time for people to get fired.

It's excellent work, if you can get it.

Still, Belichick might not want McKay to be the buffer between coach and owner. And McKay surely sees that coming.

As one team executive remarked once the Belichick-to-Atlanta chatter emerged, McKay likely won't be inclined to support it. Belichick, per the source, and McKay have been at odds in the past over rules changes, given McKay's role as chair of the Competition Committee.

The source predicted that Belichick would take the job only if McKay is completely frozen out of football operations. Blank would have to decide whether he's willing to do that to get the man who wiped out a 28-3 deficit in Super Bowl LI, propelling the Patriots past Blank's Falcons.