The up-and-down rollercoaster from the practice squad to the active roster is probably over for New England Patriots veteran quarterback Brian Hoyer.
The team elevated Hoyer from the practice squad on Saturday, September 18 as they did last week, but this time, they also signed him to a one-year contract. The commitment should lock him in as Mac Jones’ backup for the remainder of the season.
Rookie undrafted free-agent kicker trip to IR will likely remove any chance he has to make an impact this season, but it seems to also serve as proof the Patriots want him to at least have a chance to be the kicker of the future.
Tashawn Bower isn’t Kyle Van Noy, so the Patriots’ pass rush might not be as potent this week. Still, the team has some promising depth on the edges. All anyone can do is hope for Van Noy to heal up soon so that the Patriots’ pass rush can be back at full strength soon.
The Stability Should Only Help Mac Jones
Jones had a promising debut against the Miami Dolphins last week. Hoyer served as a his backup after the late-week call-up.
While most expected Hoyer to function as Jones’ mentor, sounding board and backup throughout the season, having him on the roster officially with a one-year deal still seemingly adds even more structure and a new layer of comfortability.
Jones, and perhaps more importantly Hoyer knows what his function will be for this entire season. Hoyer’s job could change quickly if the rookie QB was to go down with an injury.
Assuming he stays upright the entire season, Hoyer can continue to settle in as the second iteration of offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels’ voice.
In the event McDaniels ever does become Bill Belichick’s successor at head coach, Hoyer might be a strong candidate to become McDaniels’ offensive coordinator or QB coach. The 2021 campaign is Hoyer’s 13th in the NFL and he has spent parts of 7 of those years with the Patriots.
Aside from McDaniels and Tom Brady, nobody knows the Patriots’ system better than Hoyer.
What About Jarrett Stidham?
His name hasn’t been on the tips of Patriots fans’ tongues for the past two weeks, but the third-year quarterback is expected to be off injured reserve in November.
When and if he’s ready to play, the Patriots may have a decision to make with him. At this point, it is abundantly clear Jones will be the starter in New England for the foreseeable future. Meanwhile, Stidham is still a young quarterback with aspirations of being a starter.
He’s not going to get that opportunity in New England and he doesn’t have the same presence or knowledge as Hoyer to be an effective mentor to Jones. It’ll be interesting to see what happens once Stidham is healthy. The Patriots would probably love to allow Stidham to raise his trade value, but that’s probably not in the cards.
They may ultimately have to trade him for the best offer, or simply release him to cut their losses.
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