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Why Patriots interviewing Caley for OC job should be viewed as positive

Why Patriots interviewing Caley for OC job should be viewed as positive originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

The New England Patriots need a new offensive coordinator after Bill O'Brien's departure to Ohio State, and one of the team's former coaches is going to interview for the job.

It's not Josh McDaniels, though.

It's Nick Caley, who spent eight seasons on the Patriots' offensive coaching staff from 2015 through 2022 before leaving to join the Los Angeles Rams as their tight ends coach. Caley was the tight ends coach in Foxboro from 2017 through 2022.

Patriots head coach Jerod Mayo confirmed Monday on WEEI's The Greg Hill Show that Caley will interview for the role. Mayo also noted that he's in charge of hiring the coaches.

The Boston Globe's Chris Gasper views the Patriots interviewing Caley and Rams quarterbacks coach Zac Robinson for their offensive coordinator position as a positive change for the organization under Mayo.

"This says to me that Jerod Mayo is going to do what I want him to do, which is change this offensive system, segway to an offensive system that is easier to learn, easier for younger plays coming into the league to wrap their head around," Gasper said on NBC Sports Boston's Sports Sunday.

"Because this thing was great when it worked with Tom Brady, who basically has a pigskin PhD, but for everybody else coming in, they were just getting bogged down in this voluminous playbook."

The Patriots need a more modern approach to their offense, particularly with the kinds of schemes and plays run. Caley and Robinson's work with Rams head coach Sean McAvy -- one of the best offensive minds in the sport -- should give them plenty of material to use in New England if one of them is hired. The Rams had one of the league's best offenses in 2023 and their coaching staff did a tremendous job helping wide receiver Puka Nacua and running back Kyren Williams make a huge impact as rookies.

Whoever is hired as the offensive coordinator will be under heavy pressure next season to help improve a Patriots offense that tied for the lowest points scored per game (13.9) in the league in 2023. And if the Patriots draft a quarterback like LSU's Jayden Daniels with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, the new OC will play a vital role in developing that player and setting them up for success.

So, in many regards, this could be the most important hire of Mayo's tenure as Patriots head coach. This franchise isn't going anywhere next season unless the offense shows massive growth.