Patriots Insider Projects How Team Will Handle Preseason QB Battle

We’re a little over three months from the start of the 2020 NFL season, and it still remains to be seen who will be the Patriots’ starting quarterback come Week 1.

After New England chose not to draft a signal-caller nor sign a noteworthy veteran at the position in free agency, many assumed the reins effectively were handed over to Jarrett Stidham. Former Patriot Rob Ninkovich, however, expressed belief last week that it will be Brian Hoyer under center when New England opens its 2020 slate.

According to NFL Network’s Michael Giardi, the starting QB job is Stidham’s to lose, but Bill Belichick and Co. by no means are just going to hand the gig over to the 2019 fourth-rounder.

“Well, they want Jarrett Stidham to win the job, but they’re going to make it as difficult as possible and he will have to go out and outplay and outperform Brian Hoyer,” Giardi said Tuesday on “NFL Total Access.” “They will stress him in meetings, they will stress him once they get back on the field. Make things as difficult as possible for him and see how he reacts. They’ll throw a ton of volume at him in terms of the playbook, in terms of checks to see if he can handle it, because they know Hoyer can mentally handle it. Physically, Stidham has more upside. But again, he is the great unknown.”

Proving his worth won’t be an easy task for Stidham, as it’s been well-documented the Patriots coaching staff can be a difficult bunch to please. But if reviews from a handful of New England veterans are any indication, the 23-year-old will be up to the challenge.

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Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images

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