Report: Two teams could compete with Patriots for Bill O'Brien originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
There's been plenty of buzz about a Bill O'Brien reunion with the Patriots, but apparently we shouldn't assume he's returning to New England.
Tennessee ranks 30th in the NFL in yards per game, so offensive coordinator Todd Downing could be on the hot seat, and Breer noted Titans head coach Mike Vrabel is "close" with O'Brien, who overlapped with Vrabel for two seasons in New England in 2007 and 2008.
Breer also wrote its his "understanding" the Raiders would have interest in O'Brien based on the relationship he has with head coach Josh McDaniels, who was the Patriots' offensive coordinator during O'Brien's first two years on New England's staff in 2007 and 2008.
"It may not be New England or bust for O’Brien," Breer wrote.
Tennessee and Las Vegas both would make sense for O'Brien, whose contract with Alabama expires after this season. But there's also a strong case for the Massachusetts native to return to New England, where he had success as the Patriots' offensive coordinator in 2011 and would get the chance to work with a young quarterback who wants to be coached hard in Mac Jones.
The bar is low in Foxboro after the offense looked dysfunctional under first-time offensive play-caller Matt Patricia, and if O'Brien can come in and help Jones get back on track in Year 3, he could gain serious credibility.
If the Patriots want O'Brien back in New England, however, they may have to act fast to avoid a pair of old friends swooping in to hire him first.