"Obviously, my current situation has become the worst football job in the country at any level," said O'Brien. "I'm hoping that if I just show up at the first Patriots practice, they'll forget I ever left. I mean, technically, I haven't missed anything."
O'Brien's Penn State program was leveled with NCAA sanctions Monday, six months after taking the job in wake of Joe Paterno's firing.
"I think I kind of naively listened to Penn State's leadership when I took the job, believing that nothing much had happened," said O'Brien. "I never expected anything like this. I'm only 42 years old. I'm a young coach. I don't want to throw my whole career away because I stupidly accepted this job."
O'Brien made his statements wearing a Patriots logo t-shirt and shorts he pulled out of the bottom of his drawer.
"With these on, a whistle and a clipboard, I'm hoping I can just ease into the back of practice," he said. "The security guys will still recognize me. Hopefully they don't know that I don't work there anymore."
Despite O'Brien's intentions, his plan is unlikely to work.
"I've got my eye out for O'Brien trying to come back," said Patriots head coach Bill Belichick. "No way is that happening. He left, and now his career is ruined. I think that is hilarious. Let the corpse of his career be a warning to all others who cross me."