The Patriots have been willing to go with two quarterbacks in the past. Something about having a guy like Tom Brady can give you that confidence.
They may do so again if they find a market for one of their backups, based on the progress Brian Hoyer and Ryan Mallett have made.
Hoyer couldn’t find a taker this offseason when he was a restricted free agent, stepping into a market which included Peyton Manning and a pair of franchise-caliber quarterbacks in the draft.
But that could change if there’s an injury in camp, according to Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald, who said the Patriots should expect calls if a team comes up short.
Hoyer will be an unrestricted free agent next year, but Mallett’s the intriguing one in this situation. Character questions caused his draft stock to plummet, and New England taking him in the third round was simply a value pick.
But Bill Belichick praised him, in his own Belichickian way, indicating that Mallett has made strides.
“I think you see progress in all the players who have been here in the offseason program who are healthy and who have worked hard,” Belichick said. “The guys that are here that are working hard, I can definitely see them improving. I’d put Ryan in that category.”
It would be easy to characterize drafting Mallett as a move made simply to flip him later, and it will be curious to see how much value he has if someone has a need at the position.