Jacoby Brissett is the perfect "bridge" QB for the Patriots

Washington Commanders v New York Jets
Washington Commanders v New York Jets / Rich Schultz/GettyImages

The New England Patriots have been relatively quiet in free agency so far. They’ve re-signed a few solid players from last year’s team, like Hunter Henry and Mike Onwenu and picked up depth pieces like KJ Osborne and Sione Takitaki.

None of this is earth-shattering news, and league rivals won’t be losing any sleep over anything New England has done so far. But, the Pats did make one very savvy move, a reunion with Jacoby Brissett, who’s the perfect bridge quarterback for the franchise. 

Since Tom Brady left for Tampa Bay in 2020, the Pats have struggled to fill the void at quarterback. Cam Newton filled in at first but was doomed by injuries that left him a shell of his former self physically (being a last-minute signing also didn’t help). 

The following year, they drafted Mac Jones with the 15th overall pick, and we all know how that went. Now, the Pats are left to pick up the pieces and have a prime opportunity to do so, with their highest draft pick since they took Drew Bledsoe in 31 years ago.

There’s a massive hole at that position now that they’ve traded Jones and opted not to take a flier on a free agent like Russell Wilson or trade for an inconsistent young QB who could benefit from a change of scenery like Justin Fields. 

Pats fans (okay, maybe just me) are torn between three options with the number three pick in the draft: taking whichever of the top three quarterbacks are still available, taking a potential superstar wide receiver like Marvin Harrison Jr., or trading down to stockpile more picks and build out the roster. 

Brissett fits all three of those options. 

Jacoby Brissett is the perfect "bridge" QB for the Patriots

If they do take a quarterback at number three, Brissett is a good enough player that he can hold down the fort as a starter until the rookie is completely ready to take over. After all, Pats fans have fresh memories of what it looks like when an overmatched young quarterback is asked to do far too much for an undermanned offensive unit.

Some young players are ready to go from day one, but even some superstars have benefitted from waiting before entering the starting lineup. 

He might not be the sort of player who elevates the offense, but he has 51 career touchdowns compared to just 23 interceptions. He’ll avoid the kind of backbreaking turnovers that plagued the Pats last year and squandered great defensive performances. He’s considerably more consistent than Bailey Zappe.

If the Pats decide to take Harrison Jr., Brissett's a capable enough passer to get him the ball as he develops into a star. He started 11 games for the Cleveland Browns in 2022 – the offensive coordinator was none other than current Patriots coordinator Alex Van Pelt – and star wideout Amari Cooper was able to rack up 1160 yards and nine touchdowns. That Browns team finished a decent 18th in the league in scoring. 

Should the Pats decide to trade down and kick the can down the road as far as drafting a quarterback, he’s proven that he can win a handful of games for a team that’s still early in the rebuilding process. His 2022 Browns and 2019 Colts finished just 7-10 and 7-9, respectively, but seven wins would be a big step forward after the kind of season New England just had. 

It might not be the splashiest signing the Pats could have made, but it was shrewd, one that benefits them today and helps set them up for the future.

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