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Brady Making Possible Return For Bledsoe Extremely Tough

Jonathan Duncan
22 years ago at 8:15 am ET
Posted Under: 2001 Patriots Season

Tom Brady has been making it difficult for Drew Bledsoe to play again this season, and yesterday’s game did not make it any easier. Brady, although still making some mistakes, is not looking like a second-year QB, but rather a seasoned veteran. So what should the Patriots do?..

Not as easy a decision as one would think. On one hand, you have a quarterback who is playing great and deserves the playing time, but on the other hand you have a quarterback who is proven, but hasn’t had many of the luxuries that Brady has had over the last nine weeks.

Bledsoe has apparently been getting more snaps during practice. This is good news. Bledsoe must be ready to play and it won’t be fair to him or the team if he is expected to perform with no (or minimal) practice. The team has a shot (and an extremely good shot) at making it to the play-offs. When this happens, what a better scenario that having the threat for the opposing teams to have to prepare for one of two quarterbacks.

Bledsoe needs to get some playing time before the play-offs begin or the team could be out if anything happens to Brady during their run. Everybody felt the season was over when Bledsoe went out in the second game. They have turned that around to give Patriots fans, around the world, new hope. Hopefully, nothing happens to Brady, but if there is a healthy, game-ready Bledsoe on the sidelines, hope would not be lost again.

Right now, it is just about winning games to get into the playoffs. Once in the postsason, anything can happen and often does. So let’s be ready. Ultimately, the Patriots should be in or out of the playoff contention by the time their bye-week comes (week 16 of the regular season). If they’ve already made it, let Drew start the last game of the season. This won’t upset Brady, as he will only be more rested to start in the wild-card game the following week. Bledsoe will feel better about how he is being treated and will also be ready to start the next week in the playoffs. It’s a win-win situation that the Patriots would be in at that point.

What about Terry Glenn? Terry has come out and said that he “DID” want to continue to play for the Patriots, hinting that this has obviously changed with his current situation. Only time will tell what happens with that situation. The Patriots should play this one to their best advantage at this point. If he doesn’t want to play next year so be it, but right now Terry will only help the team when he gets healthy. The Patriots need to do what it takes to get him back onto the field before the end of the year. He is a very skillful player and will take some extra coverage off of Brown. If he still wants to go next year, you’ve got him back into the lineup and healthy and this would give many more options in a trade.

The same is true for both Brady and Bledsoe. Whatever the Patriots decide to do in the off-season with their quarterback situation. It would be great if they would both stay, but I don’t think that this will be possible. It will be hard for either of them to sit on the bench for the season. It’s also not fair to ask either to do so. They have both earned the right to be a starter. With that being said, get them both playing time so that your trade options increase.

It would be a shame to lose Brady, but the Patriots need to look at Bledsoe as the franchise quarterback and look at Brady as a second-year quarterback who is playing great football. The Patriots have to go with the numbers of a career, not just a season when making these decisions. And the numbers say, keep Bledsoe.

The Patriots should get to the play-offs and make somewhat of a run at the whole thing, but they also have the ideal situation when looking at the off-season. There are players that can (or in some cases want to) be traded who will have hefty prices. Think of the options. They should be able to pick up some additional quality players to make for a great team next year.

I know that we need to focus on the current season, but the organization would not be itself any favors if they didn’t properly try to prepare themselves for an off-season that will no doubt be beneficial to the Patriots. They will finish well, but still be able to pick-up necessary players in the off-season. Who could ask for more?

Right now, the most important thing for all Patriots (fans included), is to stand behind any decisions that are made with respect to players. The most important thing right now is winning. That’s what they’ve been doing. We all need to have faith that if something isn’t working as well as it should, that the Patriots coaching staff will make the necessary change. They can’t be afraid to change mid-stream either. The Patriots need all wins they can get. The changes can’t wait until after the game is over and review the game tape to see what went wrong.

If the Patriots continue what they have started, then this could be the Cinderella story of all time. Play their cards right in the off-season and we’ve got a dynasty on our hands.

Posted Under: 2001 Patriots Season

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