Bill Belichick rumors tracker: Latest news on Falcons, Commanders, other potential 2024 coaching options

The Bill Belichick era is over in New England. The Patriots parted ways with the 71-year-old coaching legend on Thursday, ending a 24-year tenure that produced one of the NFL’s great dynasties.

Belichick leaves behind a storied legacy in New England. The Patriots won six championships and nine AFC titles during his run, all of which came with Tom Brady at quarterback. That stretch included 19 consecutive winning seasons and a record 30 playoff victories.

Yet while Belichick’s time with the Patriots is done, his days on an NFL sideline might not be. Will his coaching career continue?

MORE: Why the Patriots moved on from Bill Belichick

Here are the latest rumors surrounding Belichick’s coaching future after his Patriots exit.

Bill Belichick coaching rumors

Belichick, Falcons have official meeting as there is ‘mutual interest’

Date: Monday, Jan. 15

The Falcons officially announced on Monday that the team had completed an interview with Bill Belichick for the head coaching opening. 

NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported that Bill Belichick and Falcons owner Arthur Blank met in person “recently” to discuss the open spot on the Atlanta staff. He also said that the conversations are ongoing and nothing official has been made, however there is “mutual interest” between the two parties. The two sides have been tied together for quite some time. 

Rob Gronkowski hearing Falcons ‘coming in hot’ for Belichick

Date: Sunday, Jan. 14 

Former Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski said on Fox’s pregame coverage that he doesn’t expect Belichick to be on the open market for long. Gronkowski said he’s heard “on the streets” that the Falcons are targeting Belichick, backing up reports from earlier in the week. 

Meanwhile, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport said Belichick and other coaching candidates might be waiting to see whether any playoff teams have a vacancy open up before deciding their next moves.

Panthers, Falcons seen as two ‘strong options’ for Belichick

Date: Friday, Jan. 12

The Falcons have long been viewed as one of the top teams in the mix for Belichick. But according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapaport, they’re not the only NFC South team interested in the future Hall of Famer. The Panthers reportedly looked into Belichick before the start of the 2023 season and before hiring Frank Reich. And Rapaport noted Carolina’s opening at coach and general manager could allow Belichick to continue to handle plays and personnel.

There are other places that have open general manager spots like the Chargers, Commanders and Raiders. However, Rapaport said he would be surprised if those teams decided to bring in Belichick. The Panthers and Falcons he described as “at least two potentially strong options” for Belichick.

Commanders reportedly not interested in Belichick

Date: Thursday, Jan. 11

While reports indicate multiple teams might be interested in Belichick’s services, the Commanders aren’t one of them, per NBC Sports’ JP Finlay. Belichick’s exit from New England hasn’t altered Washington’s plans, which don’t include the 71-year-old, Finlay reported.

The Commanders have narrowed their search for a head of football operations down to two candidates, so they appear to be moving quickly to find their new regime after firing head coach Ron Rivera on Monday. 

Falcons’ interest in Belichick dates back ‘weeks’

Date: Thursday, Jan. 11

The Falcons have had an interest in hiring Belichick “for weeks,” according to The Athletic’s Dianna Russini, who added that Atlanta is still targeting other candidates as well.

The Falcons have put in interview requests for several candidates not named Belichick, but this isn’t the first time they have been connected to the legendary coach. Atlanta fired head coach Arthur Smith just hours after its disappointing season ended Sunday night, and owner Arthur Blank appears to be casting a wide net in his search for Smith’s replacement.

MORE: Where Bill Belichick, Pete Carroll rank on list of winningest NFL coaches

Bill Belichick ‘will want to continue coaching’ after split with Patriots

Date: Thursday, Jan. 11

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that Belichick is expected to want to continue coaching. Schefter continued that Belichick is “expected to draw interest from at least some” of the other teams with an opening, including the Falcons.

While Belichick may provide the answer himself during his press conference Thursday afternoon, Schefter’s report indicates the 71-year-old’s NFL career is not quite done yet. The active coaching cycle, with seven other openings outside the Patriots, could give him an opportunity to continue his career.

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