There are no two ways about it: Chris Simms is a believer in Jarrett Stidham.
Simms has been vocal about his view of Stidham throughout the offseason. The NBC Sports talking head believes the second-year pro has the makeup and skill set to be a starter in the NFL and could see Stidham quarterbacking the Patriots for the foreseeable future.
In the latest “Pro Football Talk” mailbag segment, Simms was accused by a viewer of dabbling in “clickbait” with one particular piece of praise for Stidham. When asked to predict how the AFC East quarterback battle would shake out this season in terms of overall success, Simms slotted Stidham at No. 2, only behind the Buffalo Bills’ Josh Allen. Simms on Wednesday refuted the “clickbait” accusation and heaped more praise on Stidham in the process.
“I hate that click-bait crap. I do,” Simms said. “I don’t give a damn whether you click on it or not, OK? I’m doing this because this is what I love to do and this is what I believe and this is where my studies with all the great people I’ve been fortunate to learn from and be around — that’s where I’ve come up with this assessment. I don’t give a damn the NFL got it wrong and drafted Jarrett Stidham in the fourth round. That doesn’t matter. He was a first-round pick that a lot of idiots in football fell for the old, ‘Oh, the team wasn’t good, the quarterback must’ve not been good.’ If you put Tua (Tagovailoa) on that Auburn team that Jarrett Stidham played with that last year at Auburn, Tua probably would have been relegated to the fourth round as well.
“Jarrett Stidham is Plan A for the New England Patriots. They like what they see. They know he is starting quarterback material. I’m a big fan of Jarrett Stidham and I think he’s going to be the quarterback and we’ll still be talking about him for the New England Patriots five years from now.”
The upside undoubtedly is there for Stidham, so it’s not overly tough to understand why Simms is so high on the 23-year-old’s potential. That said, Simms might not want to get too ahead of himself, as Stidham first needs to win the starting quarterback competition in training camp this summer.