Patriots

Vinny Testaverde shares sage advice for Tom Brady's future Patriots replacement

Vinny Testaverde shares sage advice for Tom Brady's future Patriots replacement

Few people are more qualified to give advice to Tom Brady's future replacement than Vinny Testaverde.

Why? Because the retired quarterback was "the next guy" at several points during his NFL career -- including on a Bill Belichick-coached team.

Testaverde, who joined the Cleveland Browns in 1993, took over for Bernie Kosar when Belichick released him midway through the 1994 season.

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Replacing Kosar, a two-time Pro Bowler and Ohio native who had spent his entire nine-year career to that point Cleveland, was no easy task for Testaverde.

"It's challenging go into any city as a quarterback and perform at a level as the guy you're taking over (for) who had some great success," Testaverde told NBC Sports Boston's Tom E. Curran and Phil Perry for an upcoming episode of the Patriots Talk Podcast.

"Bernie Kosar in Cleveland was a hometown hero. He grew up there. People loved him."

Testaverde was up to the challenge, though, guiding the Browns to an 11-5 record and a playoff berth in his first full season as a starter.

"That kind of took care of some of the things that needed to be taken care of," Testaverde said. "If that staff stayed together, I think we would have went on to do great things."

Even if Brady leaves the Patriots in free agency, Belichick shows no signs of stepping down. So, there's some precedent for New England finding success after Brady -- as long as the next QB in line has the right mindset.

"It's going to be the same if it happens in New England -- or when it happens in New England, because it's going to happen eventually," Testaverde said. "Those are big shoes to fill. But you have to manage your expectations. That's really what it comes down to."

Jarrett Stidham or any QB who comes to the Patriots doesn't need to be Tom Brady. Take it from Testaverde, who discovered that the best way to fill a legend's shoes is to discard them for your own pair.

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Next Pats Podcast: Will Patriots go mobile at QB if Tom Brady leaves?

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Next Pats Podcast: Will Patriots go mobile at QB if Tom Brady leaves?

There's one big question that New England Patriots are facing this offseason. Who is going to be their starting quarterback in 2020?

For the past 20 seasons, the team hasn't really had questions at the position. It has always been Tom Brady's job. But with the 42-year-old set to hit free agency, the Patriots can't necessarily count on him returning unless they want to pay him what he's worth.

So, now the question for the Patriots becomes, what will life look like if Brady departs?

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On the latest episode of The Next Pats Podcast, which returns for its first episode of the 2020 offseason, Phil Perry is here to explore that question. And really what it all boils down to is what the Patriots are looking for in a potential successor.

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As Perry notes, it's likely to be one of two types of quarterback: The traditional pocket passer or a more mobile athlete in the mold of some of the recent success stories at the position.

Do the Patriots look for the next Brady? Uber-accurate, somebody who's going to sit in the pocket and absolutely dissect every little aspect of the defense that he is looking at. Or, do they go a different route? Do they go with an athlete? Do they get more mobile? Because talking to people this offseason, I'm getting a whiff -- I'm getting a scent that people believe the pocket passer might be dead.

Perry is joined by guests including Pro Football Focus' Steve Palazzolo, Greg Cosell of ESPN and NFL Films, and NFL Network's Kurt Warner to answer questions about Brady's future and what his game has looked like in recent seasons.

For more thoughts about the Patriots offseason, check out the latest episode of the Next Pats Podcast, available as part of the NBC Sports Boston Podcast Network.

David Ortiz says leaving Patriots wouldn't impact Tom Brady's legacy

David Ortiz says leaving Patriots wouldn't impact Tom Brady's legacy

Over the past 20 years, Tom Brady has established himself as one of the greatest and most beloved athletes in Boston sports history.

But if Brady leaves New England for a new team in free agency this offseason, would that leave a stain on his Patriots legacy? Fellow Boston sports legend David Ortiz doesn't believe so.

The former Red Sox slugger recently spoke with Rob Bradford of WEEI.com about Brady's impending free agency. According to Ortiz, leaving Foxboro behind ahead of his age-43 season won't take away from anything Brady has accomplished with the Pats in the past two decades.

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"His legacy has already been built. It’s always there," Ortiz told Bradford. "That’s not the problem. His problem is not going to be legacy. He could go and play somewhere else for the next 10 years when he returns to New England his legacy is going to be there.

"It’s a good thing to do but you also have to look at your options. I hope he stays with the Patriots, but it’s not up to what I say. It’s his decision. Sometimes an offer at home might be a couple of million less than what you could get on the road. It’s up to you whether you think it’s worth it."

Brady will officially become an unrestricted free agent if he and Patriots don't agree to a contract extension by March 18. Several teams are expected to be in the mix to sign the six-time Super Bowl champion, with the Tennessee Titans and Las Vegas Raiders as two of the most likely destinations.

Listen and subscribe to Tom E. Curran's Patriots Talk Podcast here: