At this point, it appears Jarrett Stidham and Brian Hoyer will be the ones vying for the Patriots’ starting quarterback job.

Before and after Tom Brady’s departure, many have speculated that New England might pursue Cam Newton in free agency or a trade for Andy Dalton. However, the Patriots currently aren’t considering pursing either veteran signal-caller, according to The Athletic’s Jeff Howe.

From Howe’s column published Wednesday:

“a source has said the Patriots have expressed no interest in signing Cam Newton or trading for Andy Dalton — the two most popular speculated moves — nor do they have the cap space to make such a transaction.

So it’ll be Stidham. It’d hardly be a surprise if they open camp with Hoyer as the starter and force Stidham to wrest away the job, but a dose of adversity should help the kid if that’s the route they choose. Either way, as long as Stidham maintains his pace from last summer, it should be his job.”

Of course, it’s entirely possible the Patriots take a quarterback in the 2020 NFL Draft. But, with the 23rd overall pick, Bill Belichick will be operating in something of a no man’s land. He likely will have to trade up the board or target a quarterback after the first round if he really wants one.

Still, we’re talking about the Patriots. Always expect the unexpected.

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