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Patriots Daily: Is Jacoby Brissett Locked In at QB1?

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New England Patriots quarterbacks Drake Maye (10) and Jacoby Brissett (14) pass during an NFL football practice, Wednesday, June 12, 2024, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

The New England Patriots supposedly have an open quarterback competition heading into training camp. By the end of their mandatory minicamp, the hierarchy seemed clear. Jacoby Brissett was first, followed by Drake Maye, Bailey Zappe, and Joe Milton III. Now a report from Chad Graff of The Athletic indicates that Brissett will begin training camp as the Patriots’ top QB. Furthermore, Graff indicates that “even if Brissett performs at about the same level as Maye in camp, he’ll likely still be the starter.” Is this the right decision?

Signing Jacoby Brissett was suggested on Patriots Football Now before free agency began. Yes, Brissett can still plan. However, the endorsement was based largely on what he’d mean to the team as a mentor, role model, and steady veteran voice in their rookie quarterback’s ear. The thought was not to bring Brissett to New England and hand him the starting job.

The phrase “at about the same level” is open for interpretation. To these ears, it sounds like Drake Maye has to outperform Brissett to the point of it not being a competition at all. Is that the correct call?

What’s Best for Drake Maye?

None of the New England Patriots’ decisions should be based on how Jacoby Brissett performs in training camp. New England’s quarterback choices should be centered solely on what is best for Drake Maye. If “about the same level” means both struggle, then starting Brissett over Maye makes sense. But what if “about the same level” means they both look great? If Drake Maye looks great throughout training camp, why wouldn’t he be given the reins right away?

Drake Maye was the No. 1 ranked quarterback in the 2024 NFL Draft on Patriots Football Now. That said, my evaluation conceded that Maye was not a polished product. He has issues with his footwork, which will be a focus of the coaching staff in New England. His ceiling is incredibly high regardless. It is understandable if New England determines Drake Maye should begin the season as a backup. Making that decision based on how Jacboy Brissett performs in camp is tougher to understand.

If the plan is for Jacoby Brissett to be New England’s Week 1 starter no matter what happens in camp, the Patriots would be better off announcing that. If they want Drake Maye to sit, watch, and learn, why not say that? The new regime in New England has stressed a change in communication with the media, so if they know their plan, why not share it? It may help temper the expectations of fans and avoid brushback.

I’m not claiming to know at this point what the best decision for Drake Maye’s debut is. However, I am stating that getting that right is the most important decision the New England Patriots will make in 2024. To have that determined by the preseason play of Jacoby Brissett’s preseason play registers as a head-scratcher here.

Also in Thursday’s Patriots Daily:

Daily Patriots Fun Fact

There have been three Patriots players born on the Fourth of July:

Bobby Cross (1960)
Bob Lee (1960)
Michael Hoomanawanui (2012-2015)

Post of the Day

A great touchdown grab by Michael Hoomanawaui, who turns 36 today) courtesy of @NEPat2001:

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Award-winning blogger, Dan's work has also been featured on Fox Sports, Boston Metro, Barstool Sports, MLB.com, and many other outlets.

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