Patriots fans should not care what Jarrett Stidham is up to right now.
It’s alright, Patriots media. We understand the inclination. After all, you spent an entire spring and most of the summer attempting to do mental gymnastics to justify resting the team’s two-decade contention streak on the right arm of Jarrett Stidham, an inconsistent second-year fourth-rounder.
It made little-to-no sense, but the Pats seemed prepared to do it, so you had to gush all summer long about how the coaching staff “really liked” everything they were seeing in the locker room actually, and Stidham had the kind of lunch-pail attitude that could theoretically blossom just enough in a “Do Your Job” locker room.
But there’s no need to pretend anymore. The Patriots scooped former MVP Cam Newton off the scrap heap, and have been making a mockery of the NFL’s other 29 teams ever since.
So, with that in mind, and Newton firmly installed for the long haul (?), there’s really no need to be doing this after Week 3.
The Patriots coaches still love Stidham! Still love him. Lot of loving going on over here.
He’s been inactive.
We understand. It can be difficult to abandon a narrative you spent so many months crafting with precision. But if Newton’s mere arrival didn’t make you stop breaking down Stidham’s practice tape like the Zapruder film, surely his first three dominant weeks with complete command of the offense did.
Entering 2020, Stidham seemed like a project who was poised to unnecessarily be given the spotlight by default, potentially ushering in the dreaded and unheard-of tank. Writers and coaches needed to gas up his arrival for their own sanity to convince themselves their jobs weren’t about to get a lot less interesting.
But then Cam came to town. And checking in on Stidham is nearly as disrespectful at this point as constantly badgering the current starter about his “fit” in this system he’s already fitting into.
So it rings a bit hollow when, say, people ask Josh McDaniels to praise Stidham, too. Almost as if people are trying to justify all the Stidham study they did before he was put on the back burner.
"“Stid has done a great job since he got here,” offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels told reporters Tuesday. “He’s a great kid and loves the game football. Works really hard. Has put a lot of time and effort into his craft.”"
QB coach Jedd Fisch had some very similar platitudes.
"“Well Jared has been, he’s a pleasure to work with because all he wants to ever do is get better and all he wants to do is improve and find a way to be more a part of playing,” he said. “And he’s done a tremendous job there in terms of his work ethic, watching film, spending extra time in the meeting room, spending extra time on the practice field, staying later on the field, making sure pregame warmup he’s always available before, you know, before kickoff, so to speak.”"
It’s possible Jarrett Stidham will be a viable NFL QB someday. He might even be more than a backup.
But any Patriots fan who’s spent the first three weeks of the NFL season watching Newton revitalize the offense while simultaneously thinking, “Huh, wonder how Jarrett Stidham’s doing?” shouldn’t be catered to.
Let the man develop in peace. His summer is over.