One of the big questions surrounding New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and his suspension was how the team would manage his snaps in the preseason. Brady has played four drives against the Panthers, and that’s it, so there was some question about whether or not he’d play in week 4 of the preseason against the Giants.
Theoretically, there’s now a chance he could play.
Tom Brady is making the trip to New Jersey. Julian Edelman is with the team, too. Sounds like if you're healthy, you're traveling.— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) August 31, 2016
The Patriots keep their injured players at home during road trips, which is why this report is newsworthy. Brady and wide receiver Julian Edelman are healthy. But will they play?
Typically, the 4th preseason game is for those players on the fringe of the roster to put forth their best tape in order to make the team, or audition for another squad. Brady playing in the game would come as a serious surprise.
Personally, I wouldn’t expect to see Brady on the field. I think he’s going in a leadership capacity, making a unique appearance in the same way that he participated in the coin flip against the Panthers with the captains for the first time in forever.
The trip to East Rutherford, New Jersey isn’t that big of a trip, so perhaps the coaching staff thought it would be good for Brady and Edelman, two of the longest tenured Patriots, to be with the team.
I wouldn’t be shocked if Jacoby Brissett took the majority of the Patriots quarterback snaps, and I also wouldn’t be surprised if we saw Tom Brady sitting next to Brissett on the sideline, going over each drive in a mentorship capacity.
I think Edelman is in a different boat. He clearly showed signs of rust against the Panthers and he had a huge red zone miscommunication with Jimmy Garoppolo (I think Garoppolo gets the blame for not seeing linebacker Luke Kuechly). I think Edelman and Garoppolo will get to work on their rapport for a couple drives before sitting out the rest of the game.
We will find out tomorrow.