The New England Patriots were docked two OTA practices by the NFL due to offseason violations, and now it’s alleged that Joe Judge was responsible.
The New England Patriots were supposed to begin their organized team activities on Thursday, but it was seemingly canceled. Later on, however, it was reported that the Patriots were docked two OTA practices, one this week and one next week, due to offseason violations. Now, there are some updates regarding what the violations were, and it involves one of their prominent assistant coaches.
According to Greg Bedard of the Boston Sports Journal, head coach Bill Belichick was fined $50,000 due to the violations. The reason for the actions by the NFL was because of assistant coach, and former New York Giants head coach, Joe Judge.
The NFL Players Association wrote on May 9, per Boston Sports Journal, that “Patriots’ Special Teams Coach Joe Judge directed special teams players to be at the Club’s facility longer than the maximum of four hours permitted during Phase Two of the Club’s program.”
Joe Judge’s error was the cause of the Patriots’ loss of two OTA practices
Per the documents obtained by Bedard, the violations stemmed from “special teams workshops” that were led by Judge on May 1, 2, and 4, which were held 20 minutes before scheduled meetings and practices for offensive and defensive players.
The Patriots argued that these “workshops” were not mandatory.
Judge got his start in the NFL with the Patriots as a special teams assistant, where he ultimately worked his way up to coordinator. In 2020, Judge was hired to become the head coach of the Giants.
Despite finishing his first season with a 6-10 record, the Giants just missed out on a playoff spot. The following year was an unmitigated disaster for Judge and the Giants.
In 2021, they went 4-13 on the year, had to start Mike Glennon and Jake Fromm at quarterback due to a Daniel Jones injury, and unveiled a play call that was ridiculed throughout the entire league in the season finale, which was quarterback sneaks deep in their zone to help gain more room to punt. Yeah.
After the season, general manager Dave Gettleman “retired” and Judge was fired shortly afterward, with the Giants bringing in Joe Schoen and Brian Daboll, respectively, to replace them.
Judge returned to the Patriots last season, but not as special teams coordinator. Instead, he was named quarterbacks coach. Mac Jones regressed in his second year after a strong rookie campaign under Josh McDaniels, and a Boston Herald report indicated that the quarterback “didn’t like” Judge.
For Patriots fans wondering the reason behind their loss of two OTA practices, Judge was reportedly the reason.