Vick started three games for the Jets in 2014 and he seemed to get worse with each start. After throwing for 328 yards and three touchdowns in his first two starts, Vick bottomed out with a 7 of 19 performance in a December blowout loss to the Bills.
By Barbara Harrison
So, the New England Patriots will not have the services of quarterback Tom Brady for the first four games.
If Brady’s four-game suspension stands, Bill Belichick won’t exactly be in uncharted territory. The Patriots coach has had to deal with losing Brady before.
The last time Brady didn’t suit up as the Patriots starting quarterback came in Week 2 in 2008 when Matt Cassel started under center for New England.
Cassel was handed the starting job after Brady went down with a torn ACL in Week 1.
No one was surprised when Belichick named Cassel the starter, but some people were surprised when Belichick didn’t sign a veteran quarterback to serve as Cassel’s backup.
Instead, Belichick stuck with the two very inexperienced quarterbacks who were already on his roster in Kevin O’Connell and Matt Gutierrez (practice squad).
If Belichick decides to go that route again, then the Patriots will roll into Week 1 with Jimmy Garoppolo and Garrett Gilbert, two players who have zero NFL starts between them.
On the other hand, if Belichick decides to bring in a veteran quarterback to serve as Garoppolo’s backup, there are a few player who he can call.
Here’s a list of the *best veteran quarterbacks available:
Michael Vick: Vick started three games for the Jets in 2014 and he seemed to get worse with each start. After throwing for 328 yards and three touchdowns in his first two starts, Vick bottomed out with a 7 of 19 performance in a December blowout loss to the Bills.
Matt Flynn: If the Patriots do bring someone in to backup Garoppolo, Flynn seems like the perfect guy. He made a career out of backing up Aaron Rodgers and is probably the best clipboard holder on this list.
Jason Campbell: Campbell has been contemplating retirement, but the Patriots might be able to entice to him to play if he knows he only has to suit up until Brady’s suspension is over.
Tarvaris Jackson: Jackson was on the Seahawks sideline as Russell Wilson’s backup during Super Bowl XLIX in February, but that doesn’t mean he’s returning to Seattle. Jackson is currently a free agent and he would probably pick up the phone if the Patriots called.
Although all four of these guys are available, that doesn’t mean the Patriots will sign them — or anyone. CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reported on Monday that the Patriots will likely wait until Brady’s appeal is heard before they decide if they want to sign anyone.
Also, if Brady does stay suspended and New England does add a quarterback, don’t look for that person to start in Week 1. Any quarterback the Patriots bring in would only serve as a backup to Garoppolo.