Robert Kraft’s appearance on College GameDay sends mixed signals about the future

Patriots owner Robert Kraft, whose stadium hosted the Army-Navy game on Saturday, appeared on ESPN’s College GameDay to discuss several topics.

Inevitably, he was asked by Rece Davis about the steps that need to be taken to get the Patriots back to where they’ve been. Kraft sidestepped it initially, before saying this: “We like to win, so we want to do everything we can to get our team back so we can be winning it.”

That’s where the clip from the show on the ESPN College GameDay YouTube account abruptly ends, even though the interview wasn’t over. There was one more comment — a remark from Pat McAfee.

“I don’t envy your position,” McAfee said to Kraft. “What’s about to happen. We all know. We don’t have to ask.“

Kraft said nothing in response. Davis threw to break. Many will assume that Kraft’s silence amounts to agreement. Many also will agree with McAfee’s assessment. We all know what’s about to happen.

Or do we? Earlier in the interview, Kraft was asked about the overall success of his various business interests, with no mention of Belichick in the question.

“Well, it’s all about people,” Kraft said. “Collecting good people. People of good character. People who are loyal. I’m very happy that most of our key people have been with us a long time. You know, we have a head coach who’s been with us 24 years. I think that’s the longest-serving head coach. But that’s the model we have in all our companies, to try to pick the best people.”

That could be regarded as a hint by Kraft, mentioning the importance of longevity and specifically citing Belichick’s 24-year tenure. And that could be why the comment from McAfee was clipped from the YouTube version of the Kraft interview.

Maybe we’ve got it all wrong. Maybe Belichick will be back in 2024 with the Patriots, making it an even 25 years at the helm.

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