INDIANAPOLIS -- We've seen Patriots coach Bill Belichick many times this week at the NFL Scouting Combine. Whether at Lucas Oil Stadium, walking the hallways or at a fine dining establishment, he's been with former Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Greg Schiano.
The close relationship begs the question: Is Schiano officially going to join Belichick in New England?
ESPN Boston's Field Yates writes that Schiano's current plan is to stay out of the NFL this season and remain living in Tampa. He has a son in high school who is set to graduate in 2015, and doesn't want to uproot his family.
NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport confirmed as much, although Schiano's presence this week could be a sign he'll serve as an unofficial adviser and sounding board for Belichick this season. Perhaps the role could become more formal as time wears on.
After a bruising two-year run in Tampa, hanging out with Belichick all week in front of 31 other teams will help rehabilitate Schiano's image. He's been more relaxed by all accounts in Indianapolis. The trio of Belichick, Schiano and new Patriots "assistant to the coaching staff" Michael Lombardi have been enjoying each other's company.
Perhaps Schiano, like Lombardi, will work in an official capacity for Belichick after some time out of the game.