Ryan Mallett is having the best training camp of his NFL career, and New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick has taken notice.
Mallett still has struggled with consistency from practice to practice, but his accuracy and decision-making appears to have improved this offseason. Belichick said Mallett will have plenty of opportunities to show his stuff during the Patriots’ four preseason games this summer.
“I think Ryan has been solid for us all year,” Belichick said Tuesday in Richmond, Va., before the Patriots’ joint practices with the Washington Redskins. “He’s come back and done everything, done very well. Like everybody out there every player, some plays are better than others.
“Ryan has good poise in the huddle, good presence on the field, handles the team well and absolutely knows the offense from A to Z and can make the adjustments and whatever changes, communications, checks, we need to make. He’s shown good ability to do that, he has a lot of physical talent. He’ll get an opportunity to — he really hasn’t had an opportunity to play in a regular-season game in three years, so he’ll get a lot of playing time this year in preseason and hopefully continue to improve.”
Mallett is in the final year of his rookie contract, and he’s being pushed for the backup role by rookie quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, who the Patriots selected in the second round of the 2014 NFL draft. Mallett long has been involved in trade rumors, but unless Garoppolo can show major improvement in the next month, the fourth-year pro appears to be sticking around Gillette Stadium for one more season.
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