Patriots Talk Podcast

Brian Hoyer reveals which QB in 2024 draft would be best fit for Patriots

One QB prospect stood out the most to Hoyer when watching film.

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There's a lot that goes into playing quarterback for the New England Patriots.

Sure, talent is very important. You have to be able to throw accurately and with power. You need to be able to evade the pass rush. You need to be able to stay composed in clutch situations.

But there are plenty of factors outside of talent that the Patriots must consider when dissecting the strengths and weaknesses of the top quarterbacks available in the 2024 NFL Draft.

The starting quarterback in New England has to be able to thrive in cold weather. He also needs to be able to handle the pressure and expectations of playing for a franchise with six Super Bowl titles and a very passionate fanbase/media.

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Brian Hoyer spent eight seasons with the Patriots as a backup to Tom Brady, Cam Newton and Mac Jones. Which of the quarterbacks in the 2024 NFL Draft does he think fit best in New England?

"I watched Michael Penix Jr., Drake Maye, Jayden Daniels and Caleb Williams, which, look, the reality is probably two of those guys won't be available to the Patriots unless they were to trade up," Hoyer said. "But I actually came away really liking Daniels. I kind of just assumed by his depth that he was kind of like this dual-threat guy. And the more I watched him, he sits in the pocket. 

"Actually, and maybe I was just seeing the LSU uniforms, but I'm like, 'This guy kind of looks like Joe Burrow when he's dropping back to pass and the way he throws.' But then he would take off for like a 50-yard run. He's like -- it's almost Lamar Jackson-esque, you know? Do those skills translate to the cold? I don't know."

One concern Hoyer has with Daniels, and it's a common one when discussing the reigning Heisman Trophy winner, is his lack of size. He's not the biggest guy, and for someone who likes to escape the pocket and run -- 1,134 yards and 11 rushing touchdowns in 2023 -- he could take a lot of hits at the NFL level.

"I played with Cam Newton, and Cam was the biggest quarterback that I've ever seen and still took a pounding," Hoyer said. "So if you're going to play that type of style, how long (can you stay healthy)? I mean, Anthony Richardson for the Colts, he got knocked out this year with the shoulder. The guys on defense in the NFL are a lot different than the guys in college and the hits that you take. 

"I'll never forget Isaiah Simmons, playing for the Cardinals, hit Cam on the sideline. You may remember in the COVID year, got a 15-yard penalty, allowed us to win the game, and he hit Cam from the white (sideline) all the way to the bench. And I'm thinking to myself, if I had gotten hit like that, I would never get back up. And here's Cam at 260 pounds, or whatever, and he's taking these hits. Those hits add up, and so the only thing I looked at with Daniels is he seems very skinny when I'm watching him on the tape.

"He's at the combine this year. Maybe he'll weigh in and he'll put some weight on. But I actually really like his style of play. And of all the guys that he kind of was my favorite."

The Patriots were one of several teams that interviewed Daniels at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis this week. Most mock drafts have him going No. 2 overall to the Washington Commanders or No. 3 overall to the Patriots.

Also in this episode:

  • Hoyer on why the 2022 season went sideways for the Patriots’ offense
  • How much more complex was the offense under Tom Brady?
  • Hoyer's relationship with Mac Jones
  • Should the Patriots move on from Mac Jones?
  • Which QB in the draft is the best fit for New England?
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