Patriots Talk Podcast

Will Drake Maye start for Pats in 2024? What to expect from rookie QB

The No. 3 overall pick will compete with veteran Jacoby Brissett for New England's starting QB job.

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Drake Maye might not be ready to start in the NFL, but he'll be given every opportunity to compete for the New England Patriots' quarterback job this summer.

The No. 3 overall pick in this year's NFL Draft is currently one of five QBs on New England's depth chart. Jacoby Brissett, Bailey Zappe, Nathan Rourke, and sixth-rounder Joe Milton are the others.

Brissett's experience makes him the most probable Patriots starter, though head coach Jerod Mayo made it clear that "the best player will play" in 2024. That very well could be Maye, who boasts far more upside than Brissett or any of the other QBs. Plus, New England went out of its way to draft two wide receivers who are excellent fits for Maye's play style.

So, should we expect Maye to start under center for the Patriots as a rookie? CLNS' Taylor Kyles and Pats Pulpit's Brian Hines joined Tom E. Curran's Patriots Talk Podcast to share their thoughts.

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"I think the only way that he doesn't start this season is if the accuracy really is still wildly inconsistent," Kyles said. "Other things you learn, like reading defenses, processing, all that stuff. That comes with experience on the field. But you do want the footwork to at least be consistent. It doesn't have to be perfect; he doesn't have to be Aaron Rodgers or Jacoby Brissett, he needs to be Drake Maye but down-to-down.

"So, I think that he can start his rookie year. I think we're kind of looking at similar to a Mac Jones-Cam (Newton) situation a little bit where, hey, if he has a day where he's just on fire and he really does get the hot hand and doesn't let it go, then they say 'OK, let's roll with this guy.' Because I think he has the mental toughness."

Hines agrees this year's QB situation has similarities to the Mac Jones vs. Cam Newton competition of 2021, and there's a good chance we'll get the same result.

"With Mac, he was the better quarterback out there. I think Jacoby can still be a good quarterback but when we get out on the field, I think Drake Maye's talent is going to be pretty apparent," Hines said. "Like, he is going to be the best quarterback in that room and on that field I believe.

"I don't know if they're looking at that how they can say, 'We're going to go away from that.' What does that say to the locker room? What does that say to the defense if they're actively sitting their best QB on the practice field? ... I think he's going to be the best player out there and might kind of force their hand."

Also in the episode:

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