Bill Belichick has parted ways with the New England Patriots, after 24 years as head coach . . . which is the fifth-longest tenure in NFL history.

The decision was reportedly mutual, and Patriots owner Robert Kraft said that what Belichick achieved in New England will, quote, “never be duplicated.”

Still, the Patriots’ slide to the bottom of the AFC in the four years since Tom Brady left was definitely a factor in Kraft being willing to let him go.

Belichick said he’s going to “move on,” but there’s no word yet where he’ll end up.  But he added, quote, “This is a day of gratitude and celebration.  I’ll always be a Patriot.”

Brady issued a statement saying, quote, “I’m incredibly grateful to have played for the best coach in the history of the NFL . . . I could never have been the player I was without you Coach Belichick. I am forever grateful.”

Brady and Belichick went to NINE Super Bowls together, and won SIX of them.  The team also notched 31 playoff wins, which is a record for a head coach.  Andy Reid is second with 22.

Belichick had a total of 296 wins with the Pats.  That puts him second on the all-time list for wins with a single team.  He’s behind only George Halas, who won 324 with the Bears.