Allen Park – About two hours after the New England Patriots defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars at Gillette Stadium Sunday night to advance to the team’s third Super Bowl in four years, Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia came back out of the tunnel with his wife, Raina, and one of the couple’s young sons.
Patricia was seen playing catch with his kid and laying down to make an angel in the confetti that still littered the field following the postgame celebration.
The moment could easily be interpreted as a farewell to the place he’s called home the past 14 years. The victory likely will be his last one at the stadium as a Patriots coach. Patricia is expected to be announced as the Detroit Lions head coach following the Super Bowl on Feb. 4.
Patricia was asked what was going through his mind after the game.
“Well, you know, after the game, after the game was kind of over and everything kind of settled down actually, I had my son here at the game,” Patricia said. “He hasn’t really been to a lot of games. He’s been to two. So that was kind of his second game. He wanted to go play on the field.
“We played a good game of touch football,” Patricia continued. “He beat me 4-0 – kind of outran me there a little bit and made some good plays on me. I couldn’t catch him. Just fun to have him out there running around and seeing the excitement he had being out on the field. That’s all. It was just kind of a special little moment for him, myself and my wife.”
Asked if he would give his son a rematch at the Super Bowl, Patricia poked some fun at his conditioning.
“He’s pretty good,” he said. “He’s pretty quick. I might have to try to get in better shape before that happens. We’ll see. I might have to take the physical game to him.”