Rex Ryan blames Bill Belichick for Patriots' ongoing struggles

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Rex Ryan blames Bill Belichick for Patriots' issues originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

The New England Patriots have received a fair share of criticism following Sunday's Week 1 loss to the Miami Dolphins, and rightfully so.

Aside from a promising opening drive, the Patriots offense was a disaster. Specifically, communication issues on the offensive line and costly turnovers led to the 20-7 defeat. It was a continuation of the glaring problems New England had throughout camp and preseason.

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NFL head coach-turned-ESPN analyst Rex Ryan, a longtime Patriots critic, places the blame for New England's struggles squarely on Bill Belichick. Ryan called out the Patriots head coach/general manager for what he considered poor roster construction.

“It’s his decision. Every factor in that organization is Bill Belichick’s decision," Ryan said Monday on ESPN's Get Up! “He earned that right, but going back to last year, bringing in Nelson Agholor, how’s that working for you? Don’t complain about the weapons. You chose those weapons.

“Nobody can get open. ... All these moves that you made, you have no weapons, one of the reasons is because you can’t evaluate them. You’ve done a poor job evaluating the weapons.”

Ryan also took aim at Belichick for bringing in Matt Patricia and Joe Judge to replace offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, a decision that remains a head-scratcher through the first week of the campaign. The ex-New York Jets and Buffalo Bills head coach believes second-year quarterback Mac Jones isn't a fan of the team's unique coaching situation on offense.

"You have a very smart kid at quarterback, smart enough to know that Matt Patricia and Joe Judge probably ain't that good a football coach for him, I mean offensive coaching-wise," Ryan said.

The Patriots will look to quiet the critics next Sunday when they visit the Pittsburgh Steelers. But even if they earn a bounce-back victory, Ryan doesn't expect it to be smooth sailing from there for Belichick's group.

“This is going to be a long-ass year," Ryan said.

Kickoff for Patriots-Steelers is set for 1 p.m. ET at Acrisure Stadium.