The New England Patriots began to prepare for life without Tom Brady last year by drafting his potential successor, Auburn’s Jarrett Stidham, in the fourth round.
If the Bucs are looking to find their own developmental quarterback to learn behind Brady until his retirement, one analyst thinks they might be out of luck.
“I don’t know if there’s that Stidham type of guy out there this year,” ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit said Monday.
The closest thing, at least for Herbstreit, is Iowa’s Nate Stanley.
The 6-foot-4, 235-pound Stanley has NFL size and was three-year captain for the Hawkeyes. In three seasons as a starter, he passed for more than 8,300 yards. But he’s limited as an athlete and never completed more than 60 percent of his passes in a season.
If Stanley isn’t the right Day 3 pick, maybe Washington State’s Anthony Gordon would be, especially after his Cougars predecessor, 2019 sixth-round pick Gardner Minshew, played well as a rookie for the Jaguars.
“With the success and what we saw from Minshew coming out of that kind of offense — which is becoming more and more the norm in the NFL — Gordon might be a guy that you might take a flyer on,” Herbstreit said.
Herbstreit also mentioned Colorado’s Steven Montez, a talented but raw prospect, and Oregon State’s Jake Luton as potential Day 3 fits.
The most intriguing player in the draft is Jalen Hurts, but Herbstreit said the skillset of the former Alabama/Oklahoma star wouldn’t be the right fit for a Brady backup.
If the Bucs wanted to draft a quarterback on Day 2, then Herbstreit is especially high on Georgia’s Jake Fromm. Critics question Fromm’s arm strength and the way he and his Bulldogs regressed last season. But Fromm didn’t have great receivers around him, and there’s a reason Georgia shook up its offensive coaching staff in the offseason, hiring former Bucs assistant Todd Monken as its coordinator.
“Anybody who’s heard me talk about Jake Fromm over the last couple years knows that I’m a huge fan of his,” Herbstreit said.
“Whoever gets him is going to get a gym-rat type of guy and a guy who, I think, can do some exciting things.”