As the former coach of two-time NFL MVP Tom Brady, Bill O’Brien has proven he can lead a winning quarterback.
Yet, the question remained: would Matt McGloin follow?
After failing to win the undisputed starting quarterback position under previous coaching staffs, McGloin said O’Brien has already made him a better player than he ever thought he could be. And through three games, the stats certainly display improvement. The fifth-year senior has thrown for 688 yards, with eight touchdowns compared to just one interception.
McGloin said O’Brien has paved the way for him to succeed, but his coach can’t do it all.
“[O’Brien is] going to lead me there, but you got to follow,” McGloin said. “You got to do your part. That’s getting in there, watching film, working on your mechanics as best as you can, and that’s doing your part.”
While the quarterbacks coach in New England from 2009 to 2011, O’Brien was able to spend ample amount of time with Brady, who went to the Pro Bowl in each of those three years. However, with O’Brien now a head coach, it wasn’t clear whether he would be able to spend enough time with McGloin for him to make similar strides.
McGloin said without his coach, who works with him every practice, neither he nor the offense would be experiencing half the success they have to this point.
“He’s taught me so much,” McGloin said. “He and [quarterbacks coach Charlie] Fisher have done a tremendous job. They’ve brought me along a really, really long way.”
O’Brien said the staff has committed itself to helping McGloin progress with everything from decision-making to mechanics.
“I probably work closer to [the quarterbacks] than any other position on the team,” O’Brien said. “I install the plays, and then Charlie has a certain amount of time to meet with them. We divide up the responsibilities, and Charlie has done an excellent job of that, in coaching these guys up on the little detail things. I’m more of maybe the big-picture type guy.”
McGloin said he has also liked how O’Brien’s staff has utilized its players, especially on offense.
For example, the quarterback said sophomore Allen Robinson, who had just three catches all last season, should have been used more often last year.
“He’s a great athlete, a great player, a great person,” McGloin said. “He works his tail off. I think coaches last year didn’t give him the opportunity that he deserves.”
But with his coach’s pro-style play calling, McGloin said he is reaping the benefits of Robinson’s athleticism, to the tune of 322 receiving yards between them through just three games.
McGloin said with O’Brien’s decision-making and Fisher’s subtle critiques, he now feels like one of the luckiest quarterbacks in the nation.
“I’m in a really good spot right now,” McGloin said. “And hopefully we can continue to work together and continue to progress as a quarterback throughout the rest of the season.”