The Tom Brady saga took a sharp left turn Thursday at the NFL Scouting Combine. By the end of the day, it took another sharp right turn, and now it’s back where it started.

Multiple reports Thursday morning suggested Brady was all but gone from the New England Patriots. Then a couple of more reports later in the day brought everything back down to earth.

Here’s what we know: Brady’s representatives haven’t met with the Patriots at the combine. That’s not a huge concern since the collective bargaining agreement has yet to be ratified. The Patriots reportedly still have Brady in their plans for next season.

So, nothing really changed. It’s certainly odd that the Patriots and Brady’s agent, Don Yee, are in the same building and are not talking, but if the meeting would be pointless — it would without a resolution on the CBA — then what’s the point?

Let’s get into this week’s mailbag:

@kevindotbox
With all the buzz about Tom brady …would you think patriots trade up or down this year
If a top-tier quarterback starts to fall, then maybe they would trade up. But barring a Tua Tagovailoa or Justin Herbert slide, then trading down is always more likely.

The Patriots can’t really trade up that high without a second-round pick in this year’s draft without selling the farm. They’d have to dip into their future pick pool to significantly move up from No. 23 overall.

And the Patriots might want to pick up a second-round pick through a trade down.

The most likely scenario is the Patriots stay put where they are. But a trade down is more probable than a trade up.

@coxcourtney
Brady, Tom?
I know everyone in New England is freaking out about Brady after Thursday’s dire news. I urge everyone to stay patient. There are still almost three weeks before free agency begins, and the NFL’s collective bargaining agreement could be agreed upon before that date.

It’s too early to tell whether Brady will be back or not because simply no one knows. The Patriots don’t know. Other NFL teams don’t know. Brady doesn’t know.

The only way Brady definitely doesn’t come back is if head coach Bill Belichick simply wants to move on. Belichick doesn’t typically make his feelings known publicly.

I did hear Thursday that teams who are interested in Brady have formulated backup plans if they can’t get him whether that’s through the draft (Justin Herbert), free agency (Teddy Bridgewater, Philip Rivers), via trade (Cam Newton) or in-house (Tyrod Taylor, Ryan Tannehill, Derek Carr).

I’m not positive who the Patriots’ backup plan would be, but they do have Jarrett Stidham under contract, and Bridgewater, Andy Dalton or Marcus Mariota could be potential fits at the right price.

@Owen16058167
is Jarrett stidham capable of leading the pats in a successful manner
I like Jarrett Stidham. But I don’t know, and I’m not sure if anyone could without actually seeing him play in a meaningful game in a high sample size of snaps.

Stidham played great in the preseason and training camp, and I heard Thursday that the Patriots love him as much as you can love a guy after Year 1.

I think the system might need to be simplified for Stidham, but that might be beneficial for some of the Patriots’ younger wide receivers.

I ran by the idea that the Patriots would be better off sticking with Stidham than drafting someone like Jordan Love or Jacob Eason to multiple smart people in Indianapolis. They all concurred.

Let’s go rapid fire.

@THEREAL_DaveSul
Do you ever hate your job?
No, but I do enjoy complaining.

@thisryanjackson
sup?
I’m sitting at the NFL Scouting Combine writing the mailbag. I think I might have to take a nap in a little bit. The combine is tiring.

@scott_waddell87
Are you tired of the @TomBrady saga?
I am. I want free agency to just start already to get this thing moving.

@JCJurcz
Who likely steps in for Thuney when he’s gone ?
The top candidate would be second-year pro Hjalte Froholdt. I heard good things about Froholdt this week.

@StiversZach
Why does the media act like the Patriots haven’t tried to give Brady weapons? Last 4 firsts on offense, Sanu with this years second and then the failed brown/Gordon experiments.
Because they ultimately wound up failing. I do agree that they tried.

@LafortuneMike
Do you see Tom tied to AB for his FA decision? Pats clear they don’t want AB back. Now you have AB asking for a 2nd chance with the Raiders. Why now? Eliminating the Raiders from Tom’s decision. If he brings AB with him hes guaranteed a top flight talent at WR. Thoughts?
Until Antonio Brown gets professional help, then I can’t see a team signing him.

@gerhold_casey
Can the patriots put the franchise tag on Brady?
They cannot. It’s written into his contract.

@breakthewall988
Is it okay for a man to cry if Tom Brady leaves the patriots?
Absolutely.

@r_lopes12
Can’t the Patriots just tag Thuney? What’s the downside in that? #MailDoug
Too much dinero.

@EmersonLotzia
DOUG!! I’m late. I’m sorry.

Would you rather be a tree that can feel pain or a snail that would never die? #MailDoug
You’re lucky I like you, Emerson.

That’s easy. A snail that would never die.

Thumbnail photo via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images