New England Patriots

Belichick shares in-depth Drake Maye scouting report as Pats draft QB

Belichick certainly sees a lot of flaws in Maye's game but is very high on his ability to throw.

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With the No. 3 pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, the New England Patriots selected North Carolina quarterback Drake Maye. In hopes of rebuilding the franchise under new head coach Jerod Mayo, the Patriots will look to Maye to become the organization's next franchise QB.

Former Patriots head coach Bill Belichick joined former Indianapolis Colts punter Pat McAfee on his self-titled show, The Pat McAfee Show, to break down what he thinks of the UNC product.

"I think that's certainly a top need for them," Belichick said of New England's selection. "Drake compares himself a lot to Josh Allen -- he's said that for quite a while, we'll see about that -- there are some similarities in terms of size and athleticism, but Josh Allen is a pretty special player."

Maye played at UNC for three seasons, logging just 10 throws as a redshirt freshman behind Sam Howell. He elevated to the team's starter in 2022 and 2023 and racked up 8,018 passing yards on a 64.9 percent completion rate, with 63 touchdown passes to 16 interceptions.

Highlights of projected Top 5 pick Drake Maye, quarterback for the University of North Carolina

"[Maye is] a very talented kid -- good size, runs well, has a good arm, he just hasn't played very much," Belichick added. "He doesn't have a lot of experience."

Playing in just 26 games as UNC's starter, Maye logged the fewest reps compared to other top QB prospects in this draft class such as Caleb Williams (37), Jayden Daniels (55), and J.J. McCarthy (40).

While watching tape from Maye's college career, Belichick added that the 2022 ACC Player of the Year has the ability to make big plays but has a habit of rushing things, attempting to throw deep too soon into double coverage instead of letting the play develop.

"He's going to need some work in reading defenses and coverages," Belichick said.

Belichick also noted that Maye can be hesitant to throw to an open receiver for a short gain, instead hoping that a receiver will open up down the field. This habit results in Maye scrambling out of the pocket too soon -- sometimes even without any pressure from the defense -- leading to a late throw.

"[He is] too quick to scramble and get out of the pocket," Belichick said of Maye's tendency. "Of all the quarterbacks, he was the lowest rated in-the-pocket thrower."

Belichick wasn't all negative towards Maye, though, specifically pointing out how skilled his arm is.

"This is a kid that can make all of the throws, he just needs to be more consistent," Belichick said of Maye's ability to throw the ball.

🔊 Patriots Talk Podcast: Reaction to the Patriots drafting Drake Maye at No. 3 overall | Listen & Subscribe | Watch on YouTube

Luckily for Maye, time is likely on his side. The Patriots signed Jacoby Brissett over the offseason to potentially serve as a bridge quarterback. The former Patriots draft pick could start for New England in Week 1 if Maye isn't viewed as game-ready.

"Transitioning from a college quarterback to a pro quarterback here, he just needs some time and experience," Belichick added.

Belichick, who drafted Brissett in 2016, noted he had full confidence in his former signal-caller, saying prior to the start of the draft that the eight-year veteran will be a great mentor to whichever QB New England selects.

Also prior to the draft, Belichick gave a quick breakdown of all of the top quarterback prospects' biggest flaws, listing Maye's as his footwork and slow decision-making.

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