One of the longest-tenured members of the New England Patriots franchise, offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia, has decided to retire from the NFL.
And so the world turns for the New England Patriots these days.
As the six-time Super Bowl champions continue to navigate the turbulent, drama-filled waters of uncertainty, the hits just keeping piling on as well. Rob Gronkowski retired. Julian Edelman got banged up and then arrested. Tom Brady may be moving on and signing with another team.
And oh yeah – Dante Scarnecchia is retiring now, too.
According to Bleacher Report’s Adam Wells, Scarnecchia has decided he’s had enough after 36 years in the league. ESPN’s Mike Reiss was the first to report the news.
“Coach Scar” as he’s called by many New England players is one of the most instrumental figures in the Patriots organization. It’s hard to believe, but he predates Bill Belichick when it comes to tenure with the Pats. Heck, he predates even Robert Kraft for that matter.
Scarnecchia first came to New England as a special teams and tight ends coach in 1982. Before then, he’d spent 12 years bouncing around various college football programs around the country. He went on to work six seasons with the Patriots before taking the Indianapolis Colts’ offensive line coach job for two seasons (1989-1990).
Scarnecchia then returned to Massachusetts and rejoined the Patriots in 1991. Excluding a brief two-year period (2014-2015) where he momentarily retired from the game, Scarnecchia has since spent every year of his life coaching New England’s players.
It’s not immediately known who will most likely replace Coach Scar. The Patriots have also seen special teams/wide receivers coach Joe Judge leave this offseason to become the new head coach of the New York Giants, and defensive line coach Bret Bielema follow Judge to New York to become the outside linebackers coach, as well.