The New England Patriots have named rookie quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo as their starter for Thursday’s preseason finale against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium, announced the team Monday. It’s yet to be determined as to who will back him up. Ryan Mallett and Tom Brady will not participate in the contest.
Garoppolo has performed well in the preseason thus far and is hoping to win the Patriots number two quarterback job behind Brady. In three games, Garoppolo has passed for 334 yards and four touchdowns. The youngster has shown great composure for a first-year guy and has made a slew of big plays in the chances he’s gotten. Needless to say, he’s certainly deserving of the start.
“I’m excited about it. It’s a good opportunity to get out there and get some quality reps. It’s going to be fun,” said Garoppolo on Monday after learning the news.
The Patriots selected Garoppolo with the 62nd overall pick in this year’s draft out of Eastern Illinois. He’s outperformed fourth-year backup Mallet in nearly every aspect of the game. Mallett hasn’t even played as many reps as Garoppolo thus far this preseason.
New England’s decision to start Garoppolo and sit Mallett this week may foreshadow the team’s plans to carry two quarterbacks on the roster. It’s also very likely that they could be trying to move Mallett elsewhere via trade or outright release.
Whatever the case may be, it’s very obvious that Bill Belichick seems to be favoring the rookie over Mallett. He even goes about his business in a professional manner, saying all the right things.
“I came in with the mindset that I am going to practice and study as if I was the starter,” Garoppolo said on his approach to the game.