Tag Archives: Jacoby Brissett

ICYMI: Jacoby Brissett Thanks Patriots Following Trade To Colts

Robert Alvarez
September 6, 2017 at 9:54 pm ET

Following the New England Patriots trade of backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett to the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday for wide receiver Phillip Dorsett, Brissett took to his social media accounts to thank the team that drafted him.

To the Patriots organization thank you for the opportunity. The countless memories will live forever. To that locker and the friends/relationships that I’ve gain in such a short amount of time thank you guys for accepting me. Excited for this new journey in Indy and can’t wait to get started. #BloodBrothers…. Letsssss Gooooo

Brissett will serve as the backup to Scott Tolzien week one following the news from Colts owner Jim Irsay that Andrew Luck’s “odds are most likely he won’t open up against the Rams.”

Tom Brady also responded to the posting with the comment “#wolfpack” which referenced himself, Jimmy Garoppolo and Brissett during their season together and a nod to the comedy movie “The Hangover”.

View post on imgur.com

Patriots Trade QB Jacoby Brissett to Indy for WR Phillip Dorsett

Steve Balestrieri
September 2, 2017 at 2:20 pm ET

The Patriots on Saturday have swung another trade, this one on a much larger scale. They’ve traded QB Jacoby Brissett to the Indianapolis Colts for WR Phillip Dorsett.

This deal was first reported by ESPN’s Field Yates.

Dorsett, 24, is a 5’10, 185 pound WR who is going into his third year with the Colts. The former first-round pick, who was selected 29th overall in 2014, caught 33 passes for 528 yards in 2016. He is an explosive type of WR who will be expected to be insurance for Julian Edelman in the slot and on Special Teams where he could be asked to help in the punt return game. But another scenario may be that this will free up Danny Amendola for more work in the punt return game and leave Dorsett to concentrate more in the slot.

Not good news for WRs Austin Carr and Devin Lucien.

Follow me on Twitter @SteveB7SFG or email me at [email protected]

Listen to our Patriots 4th and 2 podcasts on blog talk radio as the writers Russ Goldman, Derek Havens and I from PatsFans.com discuss the latest Patriots news Wednesdays at 12 noon.

Final New England Patriots 53-Man Roster Projection 4.0

Steve Balestrieri
August 28, 2017 at 6:30 am ET

As we’ve been saying all summer, the New England Patriots will have many difficult decisions to make when the final 53-man cut down is due after the Giants game. The hour glass is running out and if players are going to make a move, they have a week remaining to convince the coaches that they’re worth keeping.

With some serious injuries to Derek Rivers and Julian Edelman, that will open up two spots that we had as locks. Ditto for the release of Kony Ealy. So, despite that, we can expect that the Patriots initial 53-man roster will change rather quickly as they’ll probably pick up a player or two via the waiver wire. I wouldn’t rule out a trade for an edge player either as they are really thin there right now.

With that in mind, we’ll take our final crack at the roster here on Sunday night with time to digest and re-watch the Lions game.

First up is the offense…

OFFENSE (24)
QUARTERBACK (3): Tom Brady, Jimmy Garoppolo, Jacoby Brissett

Out: None
New England has traditionally kept two QBs on their roster. Last year they kept three because of the crazy Brady suspension. I didn’t expect Brissett to push Garoppolo for the #2 slot this season, but his play has been really disappointing. He holds the ball far too long and his arm, though cannon-like has the accuracy of an old smooth-bore musket and not where it should be.

But I just don’t see them cutting bait with Brissett yet. Is it possible? You betcha, but not this year. I think they will stick with three but Brissett isn’t a lock by any means.

RUNNING BACK (5): James White, Mike Gillislee, Rex Burkhead, Dion Lewis, James Develin

Out: D.J. Foster, Brandon Bolden, Glenn Gronkowski, LeShun Daniels
No changes here, I really wanted to find a way to keep both Foster and Bolden. Foster is going to be on a roster somewhere on Opening Weekend. If it isn’t here, it will be somewhere else. I thought of keeping only two TEs and utilizing him in an RB/Slot receiver mode where Devlin and an extra tackle can help in the blocking. And they still may do that.

Bolden is a superb STs performer but with Gillislee back and looking healthy, I don’t see how they keep him without cutting from somewhere else.

TIGHT END (3): Rob Gronkowski, Dwayne Allen, James O’Shaughnessy

Out: Matt Lengel, Sam Cotton, Jacob Hollister
While he’s played well the past few weeks, O’Shaughnessy’s slot is still tenuous at best. He’s a better blocker but not as good as a receiver as Hollister. The UDFA rookie from Wyoming had a big game against Jax and then was barely used after that. It is obvious the team likes O’Shaughnessy and wants to keep him. Lengel, who is banged up didn’t show enough to warrant keeping him around.

WIDE RECEIVER (5): Brandin Cooks, Chris Hogan, Malcolm Mitchell, Danny Amendola, Austin Carr

Out: Julian Edelman (IR), Matthew Slater (IR), Devin Lucien, Cody Hollister, Tony Washington, K.J. Maye
Julian Edelman’s injury opens the door for the Patriots to keep Austin Carr, who to me has just barely edged out Devin Lucien for the final spot at the position. Both Edelman and Slater go to IR, Slater will return later this season, which will make for another interesting decision. The top four are locks and will be needed to step up a bit more.

INTERIOR OFFENSIVE LINE (4): David Andrews, Shaq Mason, Joe Thuney, Ted Karras
Out: Jason King, James Ferentz, Chase Farris

No changes here. Center David Andrews and guards Mason and Thuney were all starters last year, are locked and have played well this summer. Karras gets the nod over Ferentz who will be a primary practice squad candidate

OFFENSIVE TACKLE (4):  Nate Solder, Antonio Garcia, Marcus Cannon, Cameron Fleming

Out: LaAdrian Waddle, Conor McDermott, Cole Croston, Max Rich, Andrew Jelks (IR)
The good news is that Nate Solder is back at practice and although he didn’t make the trip to Detroit, he should be ready for the Chiefs game on Opening Night. Garcia has been banged up, does his injury preclude him from making the roster and going on IR? That may open the door a crack for Conor McDermott or LaAdrian Waddle (also banged up) to step in. But it appears that Solder, Cannon, and Fleming are locked in right now.

Next up in the defense.

DEFENSE (25):
DEFENSIVE TACKLE (5): Alan Branch, Malcom Brown, Lawrence Guy, Vincent Valentine, Adam Butler

Out: Woodrow Hamilton, Darius Kilgo, Josh Augusta,
With the lack of enough edge players and the release of Kony Ealy, this opens the door for another player to step up inside and that is Adam Butler who has had a very solid camp. He’s shown the ability to penetrate inside and disrupt things in the running game. Branch, Brown, and Lawrence Guy are locked. Guy had a solid camp and with Butler, the team may opt for more of a 3-4 look with the bigger bodies inside.

Hamilton, Kilgo, and Augusta played well this summer and are victims of numbers more than anything else.

EDGE RUSHER (3): Trey Flowers, Deatrich Wise, Geneo Grissom,

Out: Derek Rivers (IR), Caleb Kidder, Keionta Davis
Ealy was released early…which means that he was in no way in their plans for 2017 after an up and down training camp. Depth has become a serious issue here. Wise will be looked to now, to provide the pressure with Trey Flowers. Grissom right now is my 53rd player on the roster. He could be replaced somewhere else but sticks around for his STs play. But he’s been virtually invisible on defense and that isn’t a good sign.

Look for the linebackers to provide help in this realm. Dont’a Hightower, Van Noy, and Langi will all be utilized as edge rushers as well. This is an area they may cherry pick off of the waiver wire and/or swing a trade. I think Davis will go to the practice squad and possibly play a factor down the road sometime in the future.

LINEBACKER (6): Dont’a Hightower, David Harris, Kyle Van Noy, Shea McClellin, Harvey Langi, Trevor Bates

Out: Elandon Roberts (IR), Jonathan Freeny, Brooks Ellis
I had the team keeping just five linebackers all summer but with the dearth of edge players, they keep an extra LB and those guys will help out on the edge as well. David Harris is an early-down inside run stuffer who is a liability in coverage (see Roberts). But the difference is, he’s a guy who is an established, smart veteran and will be rarely out of position. Hightower is a guy who can play inside or on the edge as a rusher, as well as Van Noy.

Langi and Bates, the last addition to the linebacking crew both had a good summer and training camp. Langi was a bit overaggressive at times as a pass rusher, but he’ll learn to temper those tendencies. Bates noses out Belichick favorite and STs standout Freeny and Roberts goes to IR.

CORNERBACK (6): Stephon Gilmore, Malcolm Butler, Eric Rowe, Jonathan Jones, Kenny Moore, Cyrus Jones

Out: Justin Coleman, DJ Killings, William Likely
The top four are locked and ready for the season. Gilmore had, in my opinion, a terrific summer. He’s adapted extremely well to the Patriots system and should be an outstanding addition. He and Butler promise to be a dynamic pair of corners on the edge. Rowe and Jonathan Jones have split the nickel corner duties and will continue to do so, depending on the matchups. Both played well this summer. Kenny More displayed a nose for the ball all summer and just beats out the veteran Justin Coleman. Cyrus Jones, for now, is a corner in name only. He’s the primary Kick returner but the team may ultimately decide to go with Dion Lewis/Amendola, in which case he’d be expendable.

SAFETY (5): Patrick Chung, Devin McCourty, Duron Harmon, Brandon King, Nate Ebner

Out:  Jordan Richards, David Jones, Damarius Travis, Jason Thompson
The top three of Chung, McCourty, and Harmon have been solid and are locked. The team has depth for those two with Nate Ebner and Brandon King who are mainly special teamers, neither of whom plays much defense although Ebner has played in spots in the past.

Jordan Richards is a favorite of Belichick and the team is trying every way of keeping him around. They switched him to the linebacker position in the “Big Nickel” look, the Pat Chung role and he was as inconsistent as he’s been elsewhere. Too slow, too stiff with a penchant for taking bad angles. Jones was hurt all summer, Travis played well in spots. Both may be candidates for the practice squad.

SPECIAL TEAMS (3): Stephen Gostkowski, Ryan Allen, Joe Cardona,

Out: None
A good solid group who have had a good camp thus far. Gostkowski still seems to have a mental block for extra points. But is solid on his field goal attempts and his kickoffs which are outstanding at getting the team great field position on defense. Allen has had a very strong camp. We haven’t mentioned Cardona much at all….which tells you his snaps have been right on the money.

Follow me on Twitter @SteveB7SFG or email me at [email protected]

Listen to our Patriots 4th and 2 podcasts on blog talk radio as the writers Russ Goldman, Derek Havens and I from PatsFans.com discuss the latest Patriots news Wednesdays at 12 noon.

Patriots Drop Preseason Opener to the Jaguars, Quick Impressions

Steve Balestrieri
August 10, 2017 at 11:34 pm ET

The Patriots preseason got off to an uneven start on Thursday night in Foxboro as the Jacksonville Jaguars downed New England 31-24. The story of the game was that the Jags converted several big plays to carry this one making a 97-yard touchdown reception, a 79-yard touchdown run and long pass interference penalty that set up a short Leonard Fournette score.

Things were looking up for the Patriots after they tied the score at 17 but the Jaguars would quickly erase any hopes of a win after Corey Grant scampered 79 yards for the score. To make matters worse, then the defense gave up another 42-yard touchdown catch on a blown coverage.

Despite that, the team got very solid performances from Jimmy Garoppolo, Austin Carr and Jacob Hollister on offense. Harvey Langi played a ton of reps on defense and was moved around quite a bit. Here are quick impressions.

Defense Loses Two To Head Injuries:
Rookie Deatrich Wise who has been stellar thru the first two weeks of training camp appeared to get kicked in the head early in the second quarter. After remaining down on the field for quite some time, he was helped to the sideline and then to the Patriots locker room where he didn’t return. Elandon Roberts also suffered a head injury in the second half and didn’t return.

Starters get the Night Off:
The Patriots didn’t play Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski, Julian Edelman, Chris Hogan, Brandin Cooks or any of the starting offensive linemen and the starting defense was also given the night off as well as Bill Belichick wanted to see what his backups could do against Jacksonville’s starters, at least initially.

The starters got plenty of reps during the joint practices and tonight was a night to see what the backups could bring to the table. While overall it was a mixed bag, there were plenty of good and bad for the coaches to sift thru.

Slow Start to Camp? Jimmy G. Shines on Gameday:
Much of the talk this week was the slow start that Jimmy G. has gotten off to during training camp in the first two weeks. Well tonight after a slow start, he caught fire and was outstanding down the stretch for his final three series. Garoppolo finished the night 22-28 for 235 yards and two touchdowns. At one point he completed 12 in a row and was making the reads, getting the ball out quickly and was much more consistent than he’s been this summer. His final three drives, 13-14 for 168 yards and a pair of TD passes. A fumble from D.J. Foster may have ruined another scoring drive.

Jacoby Brissett, however, was another story. While he seemed to process things quicker tonight and made much better decisions with the football, his accuracy still leaves much to be desired. He overthrew Devin Lucien to kill one drive, overthrew an open Jacob Hollister in the end zone on fourth down to end another and he sailed two throws out of the end zone at Hail Mary time. You have to give your players a chance to make the play. We all know how strong his arm is, but without touch or accuracy, you won’t last long in the NFL.

Welcome to the NFL Moments for Carr, Hollister:
Two of the UDFA rookies on offense who have had strong camps thus far had big nights for the offense. Austin Carr has turned heads in the early going of training camp and he turned in a very strong performance on Thursday night. He caught five passes for 44 yards including a beautiful grab in the back of the end zone at the end of the first half. It brought the bench to their feet. With the WR position so stacked, it is going to be difficult for Carr to make the roster, but he isn’t hurting his chances at all.

Likewise for Jacob Hollister. The rookie TE isn’t the biggest guy and he’s not going to be an in-line blocker, but he’s got good speed, runs very nice routes and can attack the seams. He did exactly that tonight, catching seven passes for 116 yards, including several in the middle of the field. With the third TE position open, he isn’t hurting his chances either. He’s more of a move tight end but the intriguing rookie looks like he could make some noise.

Matty P. Has Some Work to do With the Backups on Defense:
While all the starters rested on defense, the starting eleven consisted of Deatrich Wise, Woodrow Hamilton, Darius Kilgo, Adam Butler, Elandon Roberts, Harvey Langi, Jonathan Freeny, Cyrus Jones, Justin Coleman, Jordan Richards and Damarius Travis. At times the unit looked good but they were consistently gashed by the Jaguars deep stable of running backs all night long.

The big plays were particularly worrisome as the Patriots never give up big play touchdowns. Tonight Cyrus Jones looked absolutely lost on the 97-yarder to rookie Keelan Cole. Then on the 42-yard touchdown, he turned over the WR to …no one Jordan Richards stayed in the middle of the field until it was far too late.  Richards also took a horrible angle on Corey Grant’s long touchdown. Roberts also was out of position and overplayed the run and was caught out of position. After a nice start to camp, Richards is looking a lot like the man who was buried on the depth chart a year ago. That deep ball was a play that Devin McCourty is always in position for.

Dion Lewis and Brandon Bolden Get Solid Work In:
The good news for Dion Lewis is that he appears to be all the way back from his ACL injury from 2 years ago. He played a good chunk of the first half and looks like his quick, elusive self again. He had a combined 55 yards on 11 touches.

Brandon Bolden got the start with Mike Gillislee, James White, and Rex Burkhead being given the night off and had a solid game. Bolden runs hard and hits the hole quickly and he also didn’t hurt his chances with his performance tonight.

The team will head down to Houston for next week’s preseason game #2 as well as get more joint practice time in with the Texans.

Follow me on Twitter @SteveB7SFG or email me at [email protected]

Listen to our Patriots 4th and 2 podcasts on blog talk radio as the writers Russ Goldman, Derek Havens and I from PatsFans.com discuss the latest Patriots news Wednesdays at 12 noon.

Best of Social Media: A Celebration of Tom Brady’s 40th Birthday

Robert Alvarez
August 4, 2017 at 9:45 pm ET

On Thursday, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady celebrated his 40th birthday as he continues his preparations for an 18th season in the NFL.

Many current and former members of the New England Patriots along with his wife Gisele took to their social media accounts to wish Brady a happy birthday.

Happy birthday to The Man, The Myth , The BRADY!! 40s the new…Nvm it's still 40!

A post shared by Jacoby Brissett (@jbrissett7) on

Happy Bday

A post shared by VINCE WILFORK (@vincewilfork) on

https://twitter.com/NFL/status/893198229751308289

Also to mark the occasion, the NFL shared some highlight videos of Brady’s career over Twitter.

WWE Wrestling legend Ric Flair also gave Brady a shoutout  with this iconic picture of the two of them.

https://twitter.com/RicFlairNatrBoy/status/893215821169922049

Lastly, after practice Thursday, Brady showed his appreciation for the local law enforcement agencies in Foxboro with a group photo op.

Best Of Social Media: New England Patriots Super Bowl Championship Ring Night

Robert Alvarez
June 12, 2017 at 9:42 pm ET

On Friday night, New England Patriots owner and CEO Robert Kraft hosted the teams Super Bowl championship ring ceremony at his Brookline MA home.

The headliner for the night began with news the 2016 ring contained quite possibly one of the greatest subtle tributes to the teams historic comeback victory. The ring contained exactly 283 diamonds, meant to commemorate the 28-3 deficit the team overcame in the second half and included an engraved message that read “Greatest Comeback Ever.”

The social media posts that followed as the night progressed would make any Patriots fan light up like it was February 5th, 2017 all over again, so without further ado below are some of the best sights and sounds.

Date night ❤ #Patriots super bowl ring ceremony

A post shared by Gisele Bündchen (@gisele) on

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVJI9XYBVgM/?taken-by=tombrady

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVJT6mLhPdS/?taken-by=tombrady

Turn Up Champs!

A post shared by Tom Brady (@tombrady) on

A rare occasion for Head Coach Bill Belichick as he was spotted wearing all of his championship rings from his NFL career. Seven Super Bowl titles across the Giants and Patriots including three AFC Championship rings from 1996, 2007 and 2011.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVLAXCGgVyf/

This happened last night ~ and then this happened! #MagicalNight #TheGreatestCombackEver *Scroll through!

A post shared by Linda Holliday✨ (@lindaholliday_) on

@bombsquad #family

A post shared by Julian Edelman (@edelman11) on

#sundayze

A post shared by Julian Edelman (@edelman11) on

That feeling when you see your Super Bowl ring.

A post shared by New England Patriots (@patriots) on

"I'm so Icyyyyy" – @laflare1017

A post shared by LeGarrette Blount (@l_blount29) on

A crazy/fun night to remember!! #Blessed

A post shared by LeGarrette Blount (@l_blount29) on

Last night was dope @tombrady . Tonight will be even better. #Celebrating6

A post shared by Martellus Bennett (@martellusb) on

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVKtwejhhDB/?taken-by=realloganryan&hl=en

LEGENDARY NIGHT #2timechamp -Dmac

A post shared by Jason+Devin McCourty (@mccourtytwins) on

Wow–just a small sample of the night we all had!! #superbowlchamps #rings

A post shared by Robert Ninkovich (@nink50) on

2X W O R L D C H A M P I O N #PATSNATION

A post shared by Malcolm CB Butler (@mac_bz) on

It was lit !!!!!'

A post shared by Dion Lewis (@d_lew33) on

2X

A post shared by Nate Ebner (@ebs43) on

Special teamer Nate Ebner shared his unique collection of hardware, both of his Super Bowl rings along with the one given to him by the United States Rugby Olympic team when he participated in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio last year.

LI… Rio 16'… XLIX

A post shared by Nate Ebner (@ebs43) on

Long Snapper Joe Cardona sported his US Naval Academy graduation ring with his new bling.

https://twitter.com/zeus30hightower/status/873150240798461953

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVKi_tpAWKZ/?taken-by=_boomtower

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVLKu4nF-_0/?taken-by=iii_flowers

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVLfRRlBeaW/?taken-by=sweetfeet_white28

https://www.instagram.com/p/BVKSZRMnT-B/?taken-by=vrvj99

"…Big rings, champagne…"

A post shared by Matt Lengel (@matthewlengel) on

https://twitter.com/EricRowe32/status/873300301650030594

Following the presentation of the rings, guests were treated to performances by rappers Snoop Dogg and Gucci Mane.

https://twitter.com/gucci1017/status/873580366505938944

https://twitter.com/SBNation/status/873537175605846016?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.sbnation.com%2Flookit%2F2017%2F6%2F10%2F15774972%2Fnfl-super-bowl-2017-patriots-ring-ceremony-gucci-mane-popeyes

All in all it was a very special night that officially closes the door on the 2016 Patriots season, as Quarterback Tom Brady would say the best ring is “The Next One”.

Patriots Players Ready For the 2nd Year Jump in Performance

Steve Balestrieri
May 22, 2017 at 8:00 am ET

The Patriots begin the next phase of their 2017 offseason OTAs today at Gillette Stadium and they’ll be on the field for the first time doing football drills. And while many will be focusing on the new players such as Stephon Gilmore, Brandin Cooks, and Kony Ealy, the second-year players should be of equal importance. Bill Belichick always talks of the big jump that players experience between their rookie and sophomore seasons.

There are several players that will bear watching under that scenario but we’re going to focus on just three that could play very large roles in 2017.  Guard Joe Thuney, WR Malcolm Mitchell and CB/KR Cyrus Jones.

Thuney was a Day 1 starter at left guard and had the not-so-unexpected growing pains, Mitchell got hurt in training camp but came on in the second half of the season and was a key contributor in the Super Bowl win over the Falcons. Jones was the team’s top draft choice a year ago, a talented corner and kick returner who struggled mightily and was barely a blip on the radar in 2016.

Thuney was drafted by the Patriots in the 3rd round (78th overall) in the 2016 NFL Draft out of NC State. The 6’4, 305-pound tackle turned guard was a steady, dependable interior offensive lineman last year. He fought his way thru the competition at training camp to become the Day 1 starter at left guard. He showed good communication with LT Nate Solder and C David Andrews and they did a good job of keeping the Patriots QBs upright.


Joe Thuney wants to know “What are Pink Stripes?” (SBalestrieri photo)

He certainly got a good rookie report card from Bill Belichick. “Joe is smart. Joe works hard. He’s here every day. I don’t think he’s missed a day all spring, summer,” Belichick said. “He shows up every day [and] goes to work. A lunch-pail guy. He just grinds it out. And he’s smart. Takes coaching well. He understands what we’re doing.”

He needed to get stronger this offseason and that will bear some watching. But after spending a year with his demanding OL Coach Dante Scarnecchia, he should be ready for the Year 2 jump. His technique, communication, and strength should all be better. There will be no backsliding on Coach Scar’s crew.

The Patriots drafted Mitchell in the 4th round, (112th overall) in last season’s draft. His story was well known when he wasn’t a good reader and joined a ladies’ book club in Georgia. Now he’s an author of a children’s book and a Super Bowl champion.


Malcolm Mitchell puts a move on Darrell Roberts in 2016 TC. (SBalestrieri photo)

Mitchell suffered an injury in the team’s first preseason game and that definitely slowed his progress. He barely registered on the stat sheet thru the first half of the season. But after Tom Brady’s return from suspension, Mitchell gradually worked his way onto the field and earned his way into Brady’s circle of trust. He finished the season with a modest 32 catches for 401 yards and four touchdowns in 2016. But his Super Bowl was a game that showed that his future is bright with New England, catching six passes for 70 yards and again, Brady trusted him to come thru at crunch time late in the game.

The Patriots are stacked at wide receiver this season. With Julian Edelman, Chris Hogan, newcomer Brandin Cooks, Danny Amendola, Mitchell and newcomers Austin Carr, Cody Hollister and Devin Lucien. But while Mitchell’s numbers may not increase dramatically in 2017, he should be an integral part of the offensive plan this season.

No one could have predicted the struggles that Cyrus Jones suffered in 2016. Coming from the storied football of program of Nick Saban at Alabama, Jones was a talented corner who was thought to be in line for reps at least in the slot for 2016. He was also a dangerous, valuable kick returner, returning four for touchdowns in his final college season. None of it materialized. Right off the bat in Minicamp, he began to struggle with holding onto kicks and that carried over to the season. He never made an impression defensively and his season was about missed opportunity.


Cyrus Jones had ball security issues in 2016. (SBalestrieri photo)

Jones has a lot of work to do in 2017, the Patriots used a 2nd round draft pick (60th overall) last season on him and ball security should be at the top of his list. His judgment wasn’t great either, and that was the cause of his being inactive for five of the team’s final six games.

Bill Belichick needs to work with Jones early this year….OTAs is a prime spot and build up Jones’ confidence. That’s mainly what his problem was in 2016, a confidence issue and not an ability one. He knows how to play football and has been successful at the pinnacle of the college football world. Once his return issues are resolved, his play on defense should be markedly improved as well. He’s the guy we’re picking here as our selection as the most improved player in 2017.

Other second-year players include Elandon Roberts, Vincent Valentine, Woodrow Hamilton and Jacoby Brissett. In Brissett’s case, we may not see a big jump in play in Year 2 strictly because of logistics. With Tom Brady and Jimmy Garoppolo under center at QB this season, there are only so many snaps to go around. And Brissett may not get a ton of work.

The Patriots will have plenty of new faces to integrate into the system, beginning this week for the OTAs but we’ll be keeping focused on seeing how the 2nd year players perform this spring/summer. Getting off to a quick start is always a good sign for having a good regular season. For Thuney, Mitchell, and Jones that all begins today.

Follow me on Twitter @SteveB7SFG or email me at [email protected]

Listen to our Patriots 4th and 2 podcasts on blog talk radio as the writers Russ Goldman, Derek Havens and I from PatsFans.com discuss the latest Patriots news Wednesdays at 12 noon.

Best of Social Media: The New England Patriots Celebrate Mother’s Day

Robert Alvarez
May 15, 2017 at 6:20 pm ET

Former and current members of the New England Patriots took to their social media accounts on Mother’s Day to pay tribute to and celebrate the moms in their lives. Check out all of the best heartfelt messages and pictures below.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BUE0Z9mhmWB/?taken-by=tombrady

https://www.instagram.com/p/BUFn0JoAK-1/?taken-by=gronk&hl=en

https://www.instagram.com/p/BUFOjGjjXMc/?taken-by=nink50&hl=en

https://www.instagram.com/p/BUE9775gt5I/?taken-by=_boomtower

Happy Mother's Day beautiful.

A post shared by Jacoby Brissett (@jbrissett7) on

Best of Social Media: Patriots Visit The White House

Robert Alvarez
April 20, 2017 at 8:38 pm ET

For the third consecutive United States Presidency, the New England Patriots earned themselves a trip to the White House to be honored as Super Bowl champions.

Below are some of the best social media postings shared by both the team and players which provided a behind the scenes look at the days festivities.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BTFJMTKFd11/?taken-by=gronk

My long lost friend @nink50 and I with a great view at the Capitol Building. #capitol #teammates

A post shared by Rob Gronkowski (@gronk) on

https://www.instagram.com/p/BTFiOscFnqJ/?taken-by=gronk

Missing our dog #dolamite but he was there in spirit. #onto2017 #letsgoooo

A post shared by Julian Edelman (@edelman11) on

https://twitter.com/joecardona93/status/854837075291537409

Just chillin…..#whitehouse #theaterroom

A post shared by Robert Ninkovich (@nink50) on

TB, we left room for ya!

A post shared by Jacoby Brissett (@jbrissett7) on

 

The Patriots Should Not Trade Jimmy Garoppolo This Offseason

Russ Goldman
February 15, 2017 at 1:33 pm ET

There has been much talk on social media, and in the press regarding the potential for the Patriots to trade Jimmy Garoppolo now because his value could be very high with several teams potentially needing a quarterback. I understand the talk regarding this player, but I feel strongly that the Patriots should not trade Garoppolo this offseason.

First, if you have a player that could potentially be your next franchise quarterback, why would you trade him? I understand that they can probably get a first round draft pick, and more in a trade, but I would rather have the player than the picks. If you have a chance to have the next starting quarterback, you hold on to him this season and see how everything develops with Tom Brady moving forward.

Brady might play another five years, but I would see how he plays next season before deciding to trade Garoppolo. I have seen no drop off to Brady’s play, but knowing his age, I think it makes sense to evaluate his play after each season. Garoppolo is still under contract for this season, so they do not have to trade him and can wait until next season.

Second, you could still trade him after the 2017 season, if you felt it was necessary to do that. Just remember that they can franchise him after the 2017 season, and then trade him like they did with Matt Cassel. The Patriots still hold all of their cards, and I don’t think they need to play one now.

Third, what is more valuable to the Patriots franchise? Would it be the second quarterback, who the team has been grooming for three seasons to take over someday, or the third quarterback which is Jacoby Brissett, who is two years behind Garoppolo in experience, and is a different type of quarterback?

Fourth, Garoppolo’s style is very similar to Brady, as he has the quick release, and in the Patriots offense that is vital for what the team likes to do. Brissett has several attributes that are appealing like his strong arm, and potentially very positive pocket presence, but his long delivery is not a natural fit for the Patriots offense. The Patriots like their quarterbacks to do everything fast, and unfortunately, Brissett’s release is a hindrance.

To summarize, I feel that the draft picks are nice, but I think the Patriots owe it to themselves the chance to wait one more season and evaluate where they are at that point. The worst case scenario by waiting is that they get a compensatory pick down the road, but by waiting they give themselves more time to see if they have the quarterback already in-house to lead the Patriots for many years to come.