Patriots Rumors: Nick Caley Interviewing for OC Job; Keenan McCardell Requested

Adam WellsJanuary 18, 2023

INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - NOVEMBER 14: Wide receivers coach Keenan McCardell of the Minnesota Vikings looks on prior to the game against the Los Angeles Chargers at SoFi Stadium on November 14, 2021 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images

The New England Patriots have added two more names to their list of offensive-coordinator candidates.

Per NFL Network's Tom Pelissero, Patriots tight ends coach Nick Caley is interviewing for the job on Wednesday.

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport added New England has also requested permission to speak with Minnesota Vikings wide receivers coach Keenan McCardell.

Bill O'Brien has been the hot name connected to the Patriots for the job. Tom E. Curran of NBC Sports Boston reported on Monday the 53-year-old is considered their "primary target," with "unanimity on all sides" about him.

According to Curran, the main selling point for O'Brien is his familiarity with the team. He worked on Bill Belichick's staff from 2007-11, including a stint as offensive coordinator in his final season.

O'Brien has spent the past two seasons at the University of Alabama as Nick Saban's offensive coordinator. He didn't overlap with Jones, who was drafted by the Patriots in the 2021 NFL draft.

Caley has been an assistant for Belichick since the 2015 season. He began as an offensive assistant and has been the tight ends coach for the past six seasons. The 39-year-old was also New England's fullbacks coach for two seasons in 2020 and 2021.

Prior to being hired by the Patriots, Caley worked at the college level for 10 seasons from 2005-14. His highest-profile job was as an administrative assistant at Auburn in 2008.

A two-time Pro Bowler as a player, McCardell has 10 seasons of coaching experience. He began as a wide receivers coach with Washington from 2010-11. The 53-year-old sat out two seasons before being hired as wide receivers coach at the University of Maryland.

The Jacksonville Jaguars brought in McCardell as their wide receivers coach in 2017. He remained with the team for four seasons before taking the same position with the Vikings in February 2021.

New England seems poised to go into next season with a proper offensive coordinator. Matt Patricia was the primary offensive play-caller this season, but his official title was senior football advisor and offensive line coach.

Joe Judge also had a prominent voice as an offensive assistant and quarterbacks coach. The Patriots finished 17th in points scored and 26th in total yards during the 2022 season.