Patriots

For Jacoby Brissett, Tom Brady’s opinion was what mattered most

For Jacoby Brissett, Tom Brady’s opinion was what mattered most

BOSTON — If Jacoby Brissett were originally drafted by any of the 31 other teams not based in New England, would his professional life have been quieter, less stressful, accompanied by fewer comparisons and “what ifs?”

No doubt.

Would his professional life have been better? Doubtful.

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The Patriot DNA Brissett possesses means the Colts starting quarterback — and Jimmy Garoppolo — will never shake the measuring stick that is Tom Brady nor the belief that their tutelage in the most evolved offensive system in the league under the best coach gave them a leg up.

When I ran into Brissett Monday at Logan Airport I asked him whether being a Patriot for 17 months was a blessing or a curse.

“It’s a mixture of both,” he said. “Everybody sees the finished product Tom (Brady) but Tom wasn’t what he is in 2018 or 2019 back in 2002. That’s what makes it fun for me and for Jimmy too. People have these expectations for you and once you don’t reach them, it’s like, ‘Awww, you suck.’

“But at the end of the day, one of the best things I learned from Tom was him saying during our struggles that, ‘I didn’t get where I am just like that (snaps fingers). I struggled. I had my ups and downs.’ ”

Brady’s got 15 years on the 27-year-old Brissett. When the team drafted Brissett in the third round of the 2016 draft, he became the latest in a long line of clipboard-holders who’ve backed Brady up since 2002.

What was their relationship like?

“Mentor, brother, friend,” said Brissett. “Tom encompasses so much because he’s the type of guy where he’s gonna cover all the bases. He’s gonna be the big brother at times, he’s gonna be the friend, he’s gonna be the mentor, he’s gonna be the coach, he’s gonna do all of these things just because of his personality.

“He was hard on us, no question,” Brissett revealed. “It was the standard people had for us because we played behind Tom but it was more so you didn’t care about that standard, you cared about what Tom thought about you.

“You cared about Tom’s standard,” said Brissett. “I’ll never forget some of the things he would say. If he saw me relaxing, he’d say, ‘You play quarterback, you can’t do that.’ For the most part, he kept us on our toes. He played those mind games with us.

“One day he’d love us up and another day he’ll be pissed and take it out on us. His expectations were way more something you were trying to uphold than what anybody else put on you. To be a part of it and to have Tom as a resource and creating so many friendships outside of Tom was invaluable.”

Brissett, like the rest of the football-watching world, has a hard time envisioning Brady not playing in New England.  

“I think it would be weird to everyone, including Tom,” he said. “That’s an interesting situation right now, but I would say whatever he wants to do and whatever he does, that will be a thought-out decision and literally the right decision for him. Tom will make whatever work, he always has.”

Tom Brady's stay-at-home message contains healthy living tips amid pandemic

Tom Brady's stay-at-home message contains healthy living tips amid pandemic

Tom Brady is the latest athlete to record a stay at home message amid the coronavirus pandemic.

But his is a little different than the other ones you've already seen.

While most have spent time focusing on providing encouraging words to those dealing with the struggles of social distancing, Brady focused more on how to stay healthy amid the pandemic. Here's a look at his full message courtesy of the NFL's Twitter account.

This was a nice idea by Brady to give some tips to help people adjust to these unfamiliar living conditions. It also lines up pretty well with his health and lifestyle brand, TB12, so it's no surprise to see him preach the benefits of staying hydrated, being active, and eating nutrient-rich vegetables.

Of course, Brady did also have some words of encouragement for his audience and signed off by saying "I know we’re going to get through this together." So, that was a great gesture as well.

Brady will surely be focused on following these tips as he prepares for his first season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Brady spent the first 20 seasons of his career with the New England Patriots before signing with the Bucs this offseason.

NFL Odds: Here are the favorites to start at QB in Week 1 for the Patriots

NFL Odds: Here are the favorites to start at QB in Week 1 for the Patriots

The New England Patriots are facing uncertainty at quarterback for the first time in two decades. Tom Brady departed this offseason to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Patriots will need a new starting quarterback as a result.

That said, a favorite appears to be emerging to take over the job.

According to FanDuel Sportsbook, Jarrett Stidham is currently heavily favored to be the Patriots starter at least to kick-off 2020. Here's a look at the odds for each potential candidate at the position courtesy of FanDuel.

This lines up pretty well with what has come out of Patriots camp since Brady's departure. They seem to believe that Stidham is their future at quarterback, so why wouldn't they give him a shot to start? While Brian Hoyer isn't too far behind Stidham (+250), he's likely only that high because he has the most starting experience of the three passers currently on the Patriots depth chart.

The more interesting parts of these odds are the ones relating to veterans and rookies not currently on the team. Cam Newton (+900) leads the pack among the veteran options and is one of two non-Patriot quarterbacks ahead of presumed third-stringer Cody Kessler. The other is Andy Dalton (+1000).

While Newton is available, the Patriots don't have much in the way of cap space. So, it seems unlikely that they would sign him unless they have minimal confidence in the quarterback options on their roster or if one of their options suffers an injury down the road.

As for the rookies, Jacob Eason (+1900) actually leads the pack by a fair bit. He's still a longshot, but his odds are much better than the triage of other rookie passers listed; Justin Herbert, Jake From, and Jordan Love come in at +2600.

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Is this a sign that the Patriots like Eason? They're notoriously tight-lipped about the draft process, so it's hard to say. But if Eason continues to considerably lead the rookie pack as the draft draws nearer, that should be a good indication that the Pats have their eye on him.

Either way, Stidham is rightfully the favorite at this point and the Patriots seem content to give him a season to prove himself. But once the 2020 NFL Draft comes and goes, the picture at quarterback will be a bit clearer.