INDIANAPOLIS — Former Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien is back at the combine, but this time, he’s a head coach.
O’Brien, who was New England’s OC before spending the last two years as the head coach at Penn State, said Friday he learned a lot from New England head coach Bill Belichick, including how to approach the combine.
“It’s been pretty well-documented I’ve learned a lot from him,” O’Brien said Friday at Lucas Oil Stadium. “Between how to get ready for a game — prepare a team for a game — to evaluating your roster and getting ready for the draft, he and I have a good relationship. I’ve seen him here. It’s been good to see him. I think all of us who coached there from Bill learned a lot from him. I think I’ve said that a bunch in the past.
“When I was in New England, I really enjoyed the draft process, especially my last two years there,’ O’Brien added. ‘It’s exciting to be back in the process and here at the combine. For me, this is a really good part of the process because it really allows you to get to know these guys.”
O’Brien was asked about Tom Brady, and if he looks different.
“How different does he look? I haven’t watched too much — I’ve watched a couple of games on TV, but I still think he’s playing at a very high level,” O’Brien said. “A good friend and great competitor. I really enjoyed coaching him. He’s one of the best to play this game.”
O’Brien and the Texans have the No. 1 pick in the 2014 draft, and could be in the market for a quarterback. Despite his time with Brady, he says it’s not wise to try and compare any of the available signal-callers in this draft to No. 12 when it comes to Houston’s team-building process.
“You can’t — in my opinion, you can’t compare guys to Tom Brady. Guys like Tom Brady don’t come along all that often. He’s a great player, has had tremendous success in New England,” O’Brien said. “You have to look at each player for what he is, individually, and how he fits your team. Whether he’s a quarterback or any other position. What do we do as a team, schemewise, on both sides of the ball, and how does this player and his skill set and his personality and all the things that go into being a good teammate, how does he fit your team? That’s what we’re in the process of doing.”