Devin, Jason McCourty Talk Tom Brady's Patriots Exit for Bucs, Jarrett StidhamMay 14, 2020
New England Patriots defensive backs Devin and Jason McCourty appeared on Thursday's episode of ESPN's Get Up and discussed their team's quarterback situation after Tom Brady departed for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this offseason.
"I guess just happy for him if that's where he wants to be," Jason said of Brady. "I think at the end of the day, we always have to remember this thing is a business, and it doesn't always go the way we anticipate or the way we expected, but for a guy who that spent 20 years in one place and do as much winning as he did, he deserves the right to make whatever decision he feels is best for him and his family."
The Patriots won't simply just replace Brady's production.
After all, he is arguably the greatest quarterback in NFL history with six Super Bowl titles, three league MVPs, two Offensive Player of the Year awards and 14 Pro Bowl selections. He is an iconic and defining figure for the Patriots as an organization, and McCourty recognized all he did for the team before leaving.
The job of replacing him will likely fall to Jarrett Stidham.
Devin believes garnering experience will be the key for the Auburn product as he transitions to the role of starter:
"I think, like any quarterback, man, just experience. For every player, when you first get out there, every snap is a new learning experience. The biggest thing is repetition and keep doing it over and over again, so he'll be no different than any other quarterback that'll go out there. Whether it's first year, second, third year, even our new rookies that come in. Every snap will be a new learning experience, you gotta kinda take it all in and just keep pushing forward, no matter ups or downs. You just need Stid, or it's [Brian] Hoyer or anybody that plays quarterback for us to just keep going out there and know you got the full team's support behind you."
New England has veteran Hoyer as another option, but Stidham is the quarterback of the future with the roster as currently constructed.
This is not the first time Devin has praised Stidham. He called the quarterback "a really good guy" in March and said working against New England's impressive defense will help his development on the Double Coverage podcast (h/t Mike Reiss of ESPN.com):
"To me, the best thing for Stiddy was that he had to go against our defense every week. He didn't have it easy. I love his poise. I would be faking a blitz sometimes and we'd make eye contact, and he'd just start smiling and laughing.
"To me, there were weeks where he was just on point. And those were some of our best weeks as a defense, mainly because Stiddy ate us up in practice leading up to the game and I think put more pressure on us. So I really admire just how hard he works, and then I've got to know him off the field as well. He's a really good guy. Young guy, but very mature. He's married. I think the Stidhams are going to be in New England for a long time."
The Patriots selected Stidham with a fourth-round pick in the 2019 draft, and he appeared in just three games as a rookie with 14 passing yards, zero touchdowns and one interception.
He will likely be tasked with leading the franchise to the playoffs for the 12th year in a row all while building extensive experience at the NFL level for the first time in 2020.