Player Name: QB Brian Hoyer
Experience: 1 year in the NFL, with the Patriots
Past Role: Hoyer shocked the world last year, most likely including his own parents, by signing with the Patriots and being given the duty of "Tom Brady's back-up." Hoyer was undrafted out of Michigan State and had to beat out the wonder-team of Matt Guttierez, who was with the Patriots for the 2007 and 2008 season, Kevin O'Connell, the 3rd round bust from the 2008 NFL Draft, and Veteran Andrew Walter, who had been released by the Oakland Raiders. Hoyer must have proven that he could handle the role in the NFL because he beat out three players who had at least some NFL in-game experience.
Hoyer was the #2 quarterback, playing in two blow outs (For the Patriots against the Tennessee Titans, and Against the Patriots versus the New Orleans Saints), as well as getting some valuable experience in the Week 17 game against the Houston Texans. Over the course of the season, Hoyer completed 70.4% of his passes (19/27) and even rushed for a touchdown. He proved that he could handle the speed of an NFL game and earned his position as back-up.
Predicted Role: He'll still be the back-up. I don't think there's any real contest in the training camp between Hoyer and 7th round draft pick, and leading candidate for the practice squad, Zac Robinson. Hoyer has been called impressive this off-season and should easily re-earn the #2 QB spot. Hopefully we'll only have to watch Hoyer in large blow outs in the Patriots' favor, or at the end of week 16 and 17 games when the Patriots have locked up a first round bye.
Predicted Season Numbers: 0 Games Started, 4 Games Played. 30 passes attempted, 22 passes completed, 200 Yards, 1 TD, 1 Rushing TD.
Predicted Depth Chart: #2 QB
Summary: Hoyer will gain another great year of experience and should provide the Patriots with his capable back-up skills. Perhaps Hoyer will develop enough that a team will fancy trading for Hoyer- which I have to believe the Patriots might be all to willing to accept. Regardless of Hoyer's long term future with the Patriots, this upcoming season will feature stability at the quarterback position.