The New England Patriots have officially announced their new coaching staff for the 2024 season, and the most notable addition is former Cleveland Browns offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt, who will take over the same role in Foxboro.
Van Pelt, 53, has a wealth of experience in the NFL, both as a player and a coach. He played quarterback for the Buffalo Bills from 1994 to 2003, and then transitioned to coaching in 2006. He has worked with several teams, including the Bills, Buccaneers, Packers, Bengals, and Browns, mostly as a quarterbacks coach.
Van Pelt is known for his ability to develop and mentor quarterbacks, having worked with the likes of Aaron Rodgers, Andy Dalton, and Deshaun Watson. He will face a new challenge in New England, where the Patriots have yet to find a long-term successor to Tom Brady, who left the team in 2020.
The Patriots have the third overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, and could use it to select a potential franchise quarterback, such as Matt Corral, Malik Willis, or Sam Howell. Alternatively, they could stick with Mac Jones, who was drafted in the first round in 2021, but lost his starting job by the end of 2023.
Whoever is under center for the Patriots in 2024, Van Pelt will be tasked with reviving an offense that ranked among the worst in the league in 2023, finishing in the bottom five in yards per game, passing yards per game, and scoring.
Van Pelt will also have to deal with the departure of some key offensive players, such as wide receiver Jakobi Meyers, who signed with the Dolphins in free agency, and tight end Hunter Henry, who retired due to injuries.
However, Van Pelt has proven that he can overcome adversity and produce results, as he did with the Browns in 2023. Despite losing Watson, Nick Chubb, and both starting offensive tackles to injuries, Van Pelt led the Browns to a 10-7 record and a wild-card berth, with the offense ranking 10th in points per game.
Van Pelt will join a revamped coaching staff under new head coach Jerod Mayo, who replaced the legendary Bill Belichick after he stepped down in January. Mayo, a former Patriots linebacker and defensive coordinator, hired DeMarcus Covington as his defensive coordinator and Jeremy Springer as his special teams coordinator.
The Patriots are hoping that the new coaching staff will bring a fresh perspective and energy to the team, and help them return to the playoffs after missing out for two consecutive seasons. Van Pelt, with his experience and expertise, will play a crucial role in that process.
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