Ex-Raiders QB Signs Deal With Patriots

garrett gilbert

Getty Former Raiders QB Garrett Gilbert.

The New England Patriots have been bit by the injury bug in a significant way. Starting quarterback Mac Jones is out with a high ankle sprain and his backup Brian Hoyer got hurt in relief of him. That forced the Patriots to play rookie fourth-round pick Bailey Zappe. The rookie played well but he was left with nobody else to back him up.

While New England waits for Jones and Hoyer to get healthy, they’ve added a veteran to the roster. Head coach Bill Belichick confirmed that the team has signed Garrett Gilbert to the practice squad, via Phil Perry of NBC Sports Boston.

Gilbert is the definition of a journeyman. He’s played for nine NFL teams and an AAF team. He was most recently with the Las Vegas Raiders before getting cut in favor of Jarrett Stidham. He also had a previous stint with the Raiders from 2015 to 2016. Despite being in the NFL for nine years, Gilbert has only played in eight games and had two starts. He’s been a career backup. He has two previous stints with the Patriots so he understands the culture and system. He’s a good veteran for the team to have but they’d likely prefer it if he never sees the field.

Blake Martinez Starting on Raiders’ Practice Squad

The Raiders made some news when it was revealed they were signing veteran linebacker Blake Martinez. The former NFL tackles co-leader is coming off a season where he suffered a torn ACL but the team needs help at linebacker. He spent the last two seasons being coached by current Raiders defensive coordinator Patrick Graham.

Despite Martinez’s pedigree as one of the more productive linebackers in the NFL, he’ll be starting on the team’s practice squad. That doesn’t mean he won’t play plenty of snaps in the coming weeks but it also means another team could easily sign him away. If Martinez comes in, looks healthy and plays well, he may get an active roster spot sooner rather than later.

Raiders Have Huge Game Coming up vs. Chiefs

The Raiders are finally in the win column but it will be difficult to keep up the winning ways this week. The team travels to Kansas City to play the Chiefs for Monday Night Football. The Chiefs have won seven of the last eight matchups against the Raiders. If Las Vegas hopes to make the rivalry less lopsided, the need to not turn the ball over, according to offensive coordinator Mick Lombardi.

“We’re going to try to play complementary football,” Lombardi said Tuesday. “We’re going to try to take care of the football. I think that’s the biggest thing we can do. If we don’t turn the ball over, if we convert some third downs and we do better in the red area, those are the things we can control. Obviously, I have great faith in our defense to do their job. They’re saying the same thing about us. And if we do that, we’ll just be fine.

“The game will take care of itself. But we have to worry about what we control first. And that’s ball security, that’s field position, that’s converting third downs, that’s converting short yardages, and getting scoring when we get in the red area.”

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