Patriots

DJ Bean: Cutting Hoyer in favor of Stidham would have to piss off Tom Brady

DJ Bean: Cutting Hoyer in favor of Stidham would have to piss off Tom Brady

The best part of any preseason game for the Patriots came with a little less than 10 minutes remaining in the first half. Tom Brady left the game, never to return, never to risk an injury that might derail that seventh title. 

But it was a couple of minutes later, at the start of New England's fourth drive, that things got interesting. Under center was not Brian Hoyer, Brady's top understudy of seasons past in multiple tours, but Jarrett Stidham, the fourth-rounder out of Auburn who's looked anywhere from fine to great so far this preseason. 

And that was it. There was no "X amount of series for Stidham, then Hoyer." That "X amount" was the rest of them. Hoyer didn't play. Two quarterbacks. The legend and the rookie. 

After the game on Boston Sports Tonight, we picked the brains of Tom E. Curran and Phil Perry as to what the development could indicate. The addition of two and two yielded that perhaps Stidham had earned the job of the, well, two. 

And if that's the case, and Bill Belichick and Josh McDaniels believe in Stidham as Brady's backup as they hopefully develop him into something for down the road, they've got to be considering showing Hoyer the door. And boy, you have to think that would annoy the piss out of Brady. 

We all read the Seth Wickersham piece. We saw the stuff about Jimmy Garoppolo, the last "quarterback of the future," getting locked out of the TB12 facility while he tried to recover from his shoulder injury in 2016. 

It's not Brady's job to like his backup. He seemingly likes Hoyer in part because the 33-year-old undrafted journeyman doesn't pose a realistic threat for if and when the Patriots figure out what to do once Brady's contract is up at season's end. 

Still, to get rid of that guy and bump up the kid that's already been compared to Jimmy G? After the Patriots wouldn't give Brady the longterm security he coveted before the sides eventually agreed to a one-year restructure that would make him a free agent in a matter of months? That almost reads like a football coach's rebuttal to, I don't know, a star quarterback putting his house on the market. 

It's not a stretch to imagine things have gotten snippy enough between Brady and Belichick over the years. Again, the Wickersham piece. The passive-aggressive quote from Brady to teammates about "Bill's answer for everything [being] to lift more weights." 

But they also clearly recognize how great the other's impact has had on their personal success. If Brady doesn't do what Brady does, Bill's got a boat with a different name. If Bill doesn't do what Bill does, Brady's rings might fit on one hand (even if Belichick did also cost him one in Minnesota). 

And part of what Bill does is to field a roster that's (deep breath) "best for the team." 

Brady doesn't miss games. With the exception of one lost season and a suspension, the Pats haven't even needed a backup in the Brady era.

And this season, with a defense overflowing with talent, a draft class that -- no kidding -- has looked completely impressive needing to be squeezed in, an undrafted player at a position of need in Jakobi Meyers and a boom-or-suspension star in Josh Gordon, roster spots might be as scarce as they've ever been in New England. 

So, Belichick doesn't need to know right now whether Stidham is Brady's successor. If he thinks he's good enough to be the primary backup, he's got to save a roster spot by parting ways with Hoyer. I can't imagine it would make Brady happy. But it might make the Patriots better. 

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NFL Rumors: Dolphins trade Minkah Fitzpatrick to the Steelers

NFL Rumors: Dolphins trade Minkah Fitzpatrick to the Steelers

The Miami Dolphins have reportedly traded Minkah Fitzpatrick to the Pittsburgh Steelers, ending any chance the Patriots had to secure their division rival's young star. 

The Steelers will send their 2020 first round pick to the Dolphins for Fitzpatrick, giving Miami three first round picks and six total selections in the first three rounds of the upcoming draft.

Fitzpatrick, a versatile safety with experience playing both safety spots along with slot and outside corner, will help a Steelers secondary that was completely obliterated by the Patriots in Week 1. Ben Roethlisberger is out for the rest of the season, so it will be up to Mason Rudolph to lead the Steeler offense after their defense gets a major upgrade. 

This also takes a potential trade off the table for the Patriots. Our own Phil Perry outlined why it would have made a ton of sense for the Patriots to try and pry Fitzpatrick away from Miami, but it appears the Dolphins will deal their first round selection from 2018 to one of New England's rivals. 

Jalen Ramsey requested a trade from the Jaguars on Monday, so if the Patriots are willing to give up a first round pick for some help in the secondary, there's still an elite option out there. However, New England's corner group has been exceptional during the first two weeks of 2019. 

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New York Jets quarterback Trevor Siemian injured on Monday Night Football

New York Jets quarterback Trevor Siemian injured on Monday Night Football

The New York Jets are playing the New England Patriots in Week 3 of the 2019 NFL season. And ahead of that game, it looks like they could be down their top two quarterbacks.

The Jets were already without their starting quarterback Sam Darnold as the second-year passer battles mono. But against the Cleveland Browns on Monday Night Football, they may have lost their backup quarterback too.

In the second quarter of the game, Trevor Siemian was hurt after taking a hit from Myles Garrett. On the play, Siemian bent over backward awkwardly and appeared to injure his ankle in the process. While he was able to hobble off the field, he went to the locker room almost immediately. He was a woeful 3 of 6 for just 3 passing yards while being sacked twice before the injury knocked him out. 

If Siemian can't play in Week 3 against the Patriots, they will be still be licking their chops as they look at the resume of his backup. Siemian was replaced by third-string quarterback Luke Falk who has been on three different teams (Tennessee Titans, Miami Dolphins, Jets) since being a sixth-round pick in the 2018 NFL Draft. He hadn't played an NFL snap before entering Monday night's game.

While the Patriots were likely looking forward to facing Siemian, they'll hardly complain if given a chance to face Falk in what could be his first NFL start. Their defense has been stellar to start the season, so they shouldn't have much of a problem containing a Falk-led Jets attack.

Perhaps they'll be able to build on their historic start to the season as they look to start the season 3-0 with two divisional victories.

Phil Perry's Report Card: Pats D gets straight A's in win>>>

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