Among the alleged issues for Belichick: The presence of Brady's personal trainer around the Patriots' facility. Among the alleged issues for Brady: The presence of backup quarterback Jimmy Garropolo, who was eventually traded to the 49ers. It's enough to leave both coach and quarterback unhappy, writes Wickersham, though the Patriots wasted little time issuing a rebuttal.
And while the expectation has always been that Belichick's top two assistants -- offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and defensive coordinator Matt Patricia -- would be among the top coaching candidates this offseason, the New York Daily News' Gary Myers adds another name to the mix for the Giants: Bill Belichick.
"I'm sure Bill knows this is his last chance to be the Giants coach," a source close to Belichick told Myers Friday. "Bill sees an opening -- an opening to get to the Giants."
More from Myers:
The source has not spoken to Belichick since the story came out, but is very familiar with The Hoodie's desire to coach the Giants. The source also said he's not certain if the reported friction and tension in New England will prompt Belichick to force his way out, but if he does, he said he is certain, "The Giants are the only place he wants to be."
There are a few logistical issues. First, as Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio notes, Belichick could want complete control of the roster, which would be difficult given that the team just hired Dave Gettleman as its general manager. But that may not necessarily be a deal-breaker.
"He wants to be the Giants coach. I know that for a fact," Myers' source said. "That would be pretty cool. My guess is if he wants out, the Giants already know. He would be great with Gettleman. Bill is a football guy. Gettleman is a football guy."
Second, ESPN's Adam Schefter points out in a series of rhetorical questions that Belichick is still under contract with the Patriots.
"Do you think that Robert Kraft is just going to let him out [of his current deal]? he began. "And do you think that if Bill Belichick wants to quit they're just going to let him go to the Giants? And do you think that Bill Belichick, at his age right now, wants to go take over a start-over, rebuilding job? And do you think he wants to take over a team where there's a new GM that he hasn't worked with? And do you think he wants to go take over a situation where there's not a quarterback? I'm sure that the 49ers, before they traded for Jimmy Garropolo, would've loved to have Aaron Rodgers come back home. ... I'm sure there are may situations like that. [Fans] can dream. They can dream."
Kraft also says Belichick isn't going anywhere, telling TheMMQB.com's Peter King that he "absolutely" expects Belichick to be the Patriots' coach in 2018, adding that he has no plans on trading the coach either.
"When you're lucky enough to have someone exceptional, you let them do their job and you get out of the way," Kraft said.
Belichick was an assistant with the Giants from 1979-90. The team made six playoff appearances during that stretch including a Super Bowl title in Belichick's last season. It's no secret that he remains fond of the franchise and was emotional talking about it back in 2009.
"This is a great organization," he said. "It's hard not to get choked up about it. I loved it here. I loved it here."
But back on Planet Earth, the only members of the Patriots' coaching staff to interview for the Giants' job are McDaniels and Patricia.