The poise Jacoby Brissett showed after taking over for an injured Jimmy Garoppolo in the second half of the New England Patriots’ win against the Miami Dolphins on Sunday surprised many people. Charlie Weis was not one of those people.
Weis — who served as Patriots offensive coordinator from 2000-04 — recruited and coached Brissett in 2011 at the University of Florida. Despite a difficult test awaiting him should the rookie get the start, Weis expects Brissett to be ready to go.
“No one was counting on Jacoby being that starting quarterback this week,” Weis told the Boston Herald. “But I know one thing, the guy who’s probably going to be the most ready out of all of them for Jacoby to count on, is Jacoby. He has a lot of confidence in himself. He’s a hard-working, diligent guy. He’s a team guy. I think he’ll really be looking forward to the opportunity.”
While the Patriots certainly showed a more conservative attack with Brissett in the game (they attempted just nine passes in 38 offensive snaps), the NC State alum still completed 6 of 9 passes for 92 yards, good for a 100.2 quarterback rating. Weis expects that with the training wheels off, the Patriots will be able to develop a suitable game plan.
“Between that head coach and that offensive coordinator and that staff, they know what Jacoby’s capable of doing at this time,” he added. “They’ve got plenty of evidence. The kid played a whole bunch in preseason. He’s got a whole bunch of reps. It’s not like they don’t have any idea what he can do.”
Brissett might make some new fans if he plays well Thursday night in Foxboro, but Weis has been a believer all along.
“I’m a big Jacoby fan. I love the kid. It didn’t surprise me at all that he went in there and had composure,” Weis said. “You can say whatever you want, you’re nervous the first time you go in there as a young guy. But you’d never know by looking at him.”
Composure aside, Brissett and the Patriots will have to play near-perfect football against a strong Houston Texans team Thursday, but Weis believes Patriots coach Bill Belichick will be well prepared.
“I’m sure Jacoby is going to do his job for them to win,” Weis said. “But more than anything, I think this is a perfect Bill situation.”
Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images