Patriots Off-Season Profiles: Tom Brady and the Quarterbacks
Foxborough, MA– Just as I did with the Boston Red Sox after they won the 2018 World Series, I am going to celebrate the New England Patriots' Super Bowl LIII championship here on Up To Boston with a series of Patriots off-season profiles that evaluate the various positions on the Patriots roster—what they achieved in the 2018-19 season, and where they are going in the future.
First up, this off-season profile will evaluate the quarterbacks on the New England Patriots roster, which includes Tom Brady (the greatest of all-time), Brian Hoyer, and Danny Etling.
When the Patriots drafted quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo in the 2014 NFL Draft, it seemed like they were putting a succession plan in place. With the return of Josh McDaniels to the coaching staff and Garoppolo learning from Brady, it seemed apparent to many fans that this duo would eventually supplant Bill Belichick and Tom Brady as the core of the Patriots roster. While McDaniels remains with the team, however, Garoppolo was traded to the San Francisco 49ers in 2017. Since then, Brady and the Patriots have played in two Super Bowls, winning one of them.
So it's safe to say that they didn't need the succession plan. They still might not need one. Brady continues to insist that he will keep playing for seasons on end. The 41-year-old claims that he is gunning to play until he's 45. If this holds true, the Patriots will not need a succession plan for quite some time.
In 2018, Brady was 375-570 for 4355 yards and 29 touchdowns, as well as 11 interceptions. In the post-season, Brady went to the next level with 85-125 passing for 953 yards and two touchdowns. Brady's numbers were definitely down in 2018, but he still ranks among the best in the league at passing and he's doing this all at the age of 41. He might not have a great deep ball anymore, but the offensive schemes have figured out how to embrace Brady's abilities. I expect another classic Brady season in 2019.
As for Hoyer and Etling, the former only appeared in five games in 2018 as a game closer, and Etling has not thrown a pass in the NFL. The two serve as competent back-ups for the GOAT and are not meant to have anything to do with succession. Rumors are swirling that Belichick is eyeing a quarterback in the upcoming draft, but right now, New England is all in on Brady.
Image via Wikimedia Commons / Jeffrey Beall