We have entered the deepest depths of the NFL offseason. Free agency and the draft are behind us, while minicamp and training camp won't start until early June and late July, respectively.
However, while the football world seemingly turns slower these days it does not stop. After all, by late August, each team has to start making its roster cuts. Until then, players have to secure their spots on the team; they need to do their jobs (well) or someone else will.
Over the course of the next few weeks, we will take a look at the men fighting for those spots on the 2016 New England Patriots. Today, we'll take a look at rookie quarterback Jacoby Brissett.
Name: Jacoby Brissett
Jersey number: 7
Size: 6'4, 235 lbs.
2015 review: Brissett, who started all 13 of N.C. State's games in both 2014 and 2015, finished his senior year with 2,660 yards, 20 touchdowns and six interceptions, while completing 237 of his 395 pass attempts (60.0%). The numbers themselves are far from spectacular but they do not tell the whole story.
As Rich has pointed out earlier this month, N.C. State's 2015 offense was decimated by injuries, dismissals and transfers, leaving Brissett surrounded by little talent. As a result, he had to throw away the ball more often, take more sacks and had to rely on his elusiveness and scrambling abilities to make plays.
Still, at times, he was able to show why the Patriots were willing to pick him in the third round of this year's draft by displaying the tools needed to become a successful quarterback at the next level. Brissett improved his pocket presence and decision making, and while he has been inconsistent, his growth should continue in the right environment.
2016 preview: Unless disaster strikes, Brissett will not see any meaningful snaps during his rookie campaign. If Tom Brady is indeed forced to sit out the Patriots' first four games, Brissett is expected to start the year as the number two behind Jimmy Garoppolo, at least unless the team opts to add a veteran to take the number two spot during Brady's absence.
If Brady is active, be it for 12 or 16 games, Brissett will be the third quarterback on the team. While he will be on the roster as a potential replacement for Garoppolo next offseason, it would be a surprise if he is on the 46-man game day roster on a regular basis. Instead, he will learn behind the scenes and might become Brady's top backup in 2017.
The Patriots did not invest a third round draft choice in Brissett to become an immediate contributor. Instead, New England made a long-term investment and the foundation for its success will be laid this year; most likely behind the scenes, though.