Decision to go the cheap route at quarterback was smart of the Patriots

Dec 24, 2023; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; Washington Commanders quarterback Jacoby Brissett
Dec 24, 2023; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; Washington Commanders quarterback Jacoby Brissett / Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots need a quarterback, but that does not mean that they have to overextend themselves to get one. Since trading Mac Jones to the Jacksonville Jaguars, the Patriots have been content to watch other quarterbacks sign while they sit back and wait. The Patriots are being wise with this strategy, and it will set them up for success in 2024. 

The Patriots could have pursued two quarterbacks: Baker Mayfield and Kirk Cousins. Mayfield and Cousins each secured massive paydays from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Atlanta Falcons. Although Mayfield could have been a solid option for the Patriots, signing him to a deal worth $100 million would not have been smart business.

The same is true for Cousins, as the Falcons massively overpaid for him, considering he is 35 years old and coming off a torn Achilles. I am shocked that Cousins was given a $180 million contract, and it should make every Patriots fan let out a massive sigh of relief.

The biggest reason the Patriots are smart to go the cheap route is that they are not ready to compete for a playoff berth or a championship. The Buccaneers and Falcons have good defenses and strong weapons, allowing them to spend big on a quarterback. The Patriots don’t have that luxury, as they are still in the early stages of a complete rebuild.

The best path forward for the Patriots is to sign a veteran quarterback like Jacoby Brissett and draft a quarterback at number 3 overall. Having a quarterback on a cheap contract will allow the Patriots to continue to rebuild and sign other premium free agents.

Ultimately, the Patriots will either get lucky and have the third overall pick turn into a stud, or by the time they have built up their roster, they will be in the market for a premium free-agent quarterback.

Regardless, they'll have to trust the slow grind process from here on out.

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