After seeing Jarrett Stidham launch a pick-six during his first appearance of the regular season on Sunday, the Patriots might be having second thoughts about their backup quarterback situation.
They have signed veteran Cody Kessler, who had started four games for the Jaguars last season.
Although it is not obvious if Kessler will go to the No. 2 spot on the bottom chart behind Tom Brady. But one thing is clear: Bill Belichick was not thrilled with Stidham’s performance during New England’s 30-14 win over the Jets.
The Patriots coach did not give Stidham a glowing review after the game.
When asked about the rookie’s performance, Belichick said, “Well, we will certainly look at the recording. There will be a lot of things we can improve – coaching, playing. There is room for improvement from everybody. Hopefully, we will all get back to work this week and try to take another step forward.”
With the Patriots leading 30-7 in the fourth quarter, Belichick suddenly decided to pull Brady from the game. And just four plays later, Jamal Adams made Belichick pay heavily for that blunder when he returned an interception 61 yards for a touchdown.
At that point, Stidham was promptly pulled from the game and replaced by Brady, who served as New England’s quarterback for the team’s final three possessions.
Stidham was picked during the fourth round of the 2019 NFL Draft. He defeated Brian Hoyer for the backup quarterback job after an impressive pre-season.
Although the Patriots probably would have fancied signing Hoyer, that was not an option this time around, because he signed with the Colts shortly after being cut by New England in August.
By employing Kessler, the Patriots now have the opportunity of placing an experienced quarterback behind Brady. Kessler has been playing in the NFL since 2016 when the Browns made him a third-round pick.
Although Kessler has gone just 2-10 during his three seasons as a starter, he did finish with a .500 record (2-2) the last season for a Jaguars team that finished 5-11.