Departure of Patriots assistant coach could open the door for Chip Kelly

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Former New England Patriots tight ends coach Brian Daboll is leaving the Super Bowl winners to become the new offensive coordinator at the University of Alabama.

Therefore, there’s a vacancy on New England’s coaching staff.

While the job of tight ends coach usually isn’t filled by a big-named individual, the possibility of one former NFL head coach is being brought up.

His name: Chip Kelly.

As in the former head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles and San Francisco 49ers.

During the postseason, Kelly visited the Patriots after he didn’t get the Jacksonville Jaguars’ offensive coordinator job. Since he grew up in nearby New Hampshire, went to the University of New Hampshire, eventually coached there and has a home in the state, along with the fact that he’s buddies with coach Bill Belichick, the fit might be a natural one.

According to ESPN’s Mike Reiss, the possibility is real.

“Kelly could be a nice fit if Belichick doesn't see any of his young assistants ready to take on more responsibility,” Reiss noted.

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“Belichick generally likes to groom young coaches and then promote them when opportunities arise. So the first question will be how Belichick assesses the readiness of coaching assistants Nick Caley, Mike Pellegrino and Cole Popovich, or the idea of moving assistant quarterbacks coach Jerry Schuplinski to tight ends.”

Kelly’s days as an NFL head coach are likely over, but as one of the widely respected offensive masterminds, there will be a spot for him on a number of potential coaching staffs around the league, should he decide to stay at the professional level.

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Will he join the Patriots and impact their already fine-tuned offensive attack?

That remains to be seen.

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