The New England Patriots apparently don't take losing well.
One day after quarterback Tom Brady took a record four sacks and 20 hits in a 20-18 AFC Championship Game loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday, New England and offensive line coach Dave DeGuglielmo are "parting ways," per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
DeGuglielmo spent just two years in the position after taking over for the retired Dante Scarnecchia, per the team's official website.
Sunday wasn't the first time the offensive line struggled this season. The Patriots were 19th in the NFL with 38 sacks allowed, and their 1,404 rushing yards ranked 30th. However, injuries to players such as Nate Solder (biceps) and LeGarrette Blount (hip) decimated both the line and backfield, which was out of DeGuglielmo's control.
Still, Sunday's loss to Denver was an embarrassment for head coach Bill Belichick and the Patriots because it was obvious the Broncos brought the better game plan. Defensive end DeMarcus Ware described how he and his teammates rattled Brady, per Ben Volin of the Boston Globe.
“We talked about it all week. We knew it was going to be one of those quick passing games,” Ware said. “We said the defensive line, we have to be able to get pressure on them in all situations. It might not be a sack, but we have to let them know that our presence is there.”
The Broncos did just that, exposing a weakness the Patriots had been able to hide for most of the season under DeGuglielmo's leadership, per Rapoport:
In the end, the final game of the season mattered most. Losing, even in the case of a team many describe as a dynasty, often brings change, and DeGuglielmo found that out the hard way.