ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP/WJBK) - The Detroit Lions have named Patriots' defensive coordinator Matt Patricia head coach.
Patricia comes off losing Super Bowl 52 to the Philadelphia Eagles 41-33 on Sunday. His defense gave up 538 yards in the loss.
STATEMENT FROM LIONS OWNER AND CHAIRMAN MARTHA FIRESTONE FORD
“On behalf of me and my family, I would like to congratulate and welcome Matt Patricia to the Detroit Lions as our new head coach. We are very excited to have Matt, his wife Raina, and their children, Dominic, Dante and Giamina join the Lions Family.
“I also want to commend Bob and Rod for doing such an exemplary job with the search for our new head coach. I was most pleased with how we handled all the interviews and I am confident that we have found the right man to lead our football team.”
STATEMENT FROM LIONS PRESIDENT ROD WOOD
“Our process was very thorough thanks to Bob who was incredibly prepared to lead the search. We met with several very impressive candidates, but Matt really stood out in his interview and clearly became the best choice for this job.
“In addition to being an exceptional coach, Matt’s tremendous work ethic will resonate with our fans. He will be an outstanding representative of our football team, the Lions organization and our community.”
STATEMENT FROM LIONS HEAD COACH MATT PATRICIA
“I’m incredibly honored and grateful to be named Head Coach of the Detroit Lions. Thank you to Mrs. Ford and her family, Rod Wood, and Bob Quinn for their trust and support as we begin this new chapter of Lions football.
“This position comes with great responsibility, and I will commit every ounce of my energy to this football team, starting today. My family is excited to become part of this wonderful city that displays so much passion for their teams.
“I can’t express enough appreciation to the entire New England Patriots franchise, particularly Robert and Jonathan Kraft and their entire family. I will truly cherish these last 14 years as a member of this incredible organization.
“Lastly, I’d like to express my appreciation and thanks to Bill Belichick. He’s been a remarkable mentor to me, not only as a football coach but also as a man and as a friend. I have learned immensely from his detailed leadership approach to the game, which has certainly shaped me into the football coach that I am today. Quite simply, I’ve been incredibly fortunate to work with, who I believe, is the greatest coach in NFL history.
“Now I turn all of my attention to the Lions. I look forward to the next chapter of my career in Detroit.”
The Patriots ranked 29th in yards allowed (366.0) during the regular season, but held opponents to an average of 18.5 points. Only one of the Patriots' final 12 regular season opponents scored more than 24 points.
Patricia's 2016 defense finished No. 1 in the NFL by allowing 15.6 points per game.
The Lions will introduce Patricia during a press conference on Wednesday at 3 p.m. The Lions policy prevents FOX 2 from streaming from inside Lions buildings. Highlights from the press conference can be seen on TV on FOX 2 News at 5 p.m. on Wednesday.
Patricia previously worked with General Manager Bob Quinn in New England.and has been a member of the Patriots coaching staff since 2004 and the team's defensive coordinator for the last six seasons. The 43-year-old has been a part of three of their five Super Bowl victories, as well as their losses to the Giants after the 2007 and '11 seasons.
Prior to joining the Patriots, Patricia spent six seasons coaching in college. He worked as an aeronautical engineer for two years before returning to coaching at Amherst in 1999. Patricia's first coaching experience came in 1996, when he served as a graduate assistant at RPI, where he was a center and guard.
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