The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are searching for their next offensive coordinator and unfortunately for them, one popular option is officially off the table.

Per ESPN‘s Adam Schefter, the New England Patriots are reuniting with former Pats OC and former Houston Texans head coach Bill O’Brien. The Patriots are bringing O’Brien back as the OC after he spent the last two seasons out of professional football.

O’Brien was the Patriots OC in 2011. He helped the team finish third in both points scored per game (32.0 ppg) and yards per play (6.3) that season. Tom Brady threw 39 touchdowns to 12 interceptions that year and the Patriots were able to reach the Super Bowl before losing in dramatic fashion to the New York Giants (again).

The biggest takeaway from O’Brien’s hire, however, is the fact that his new job hurts the Buccaneers’ chances of re-signing Brady. O’Brien’s potential hire could’ve persuaded the seven-time Super Bowl champ to return to the Buccaneers thanks to his familiarity with the offense and the coach.

That’s a big deal when it comes to Brady: he can’t carry a team anymore; he needs things around him to be ideal in terms of personnel and operation. If the Buccaneers can’t field a more-than-competitive roster, then the chances of a fourth season with Brady become less and less.

The Buccaneers have seven draft picks, but they don’t have a ton of cap space and they have a lot of important players to re-sign. Brady’s return alleviates the cap situation because the Buccaneers will be able to push his $35 million hit down the road, but outside of that, the Buccaneers don’t have many resources to keep the roster in tip-top shape.

Therefore, it’s imperative to make things as comfortable as possible for Brady. And O’Brien would’ve been a big part of that if he were to come to Tampa Bay.

But, obviously, that’s no longer the case. And now, the Buccaneers will continue to look for the guy to lead their offense in 2023.

Featured image via Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

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